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Covid Update Letter from Guy Chappell

20 July 2021


Covid-19 Update 2021


Following the recent Government announcement and news reports, I wanted to provide an update on the arrangements for the rest of this term and the beginning of the Autumn term 2021.


The Trust Schools and Area Resource Bases will remain open and operating as usual and unchanged until the end of term. It is important to highlight that Trust Schools and Area Resource Bases will continue to ensure that the wellbeing, health and safety of pupils and staff remains the priority.


The Government paused shielding advice nationally from 31 March 2021. All clinically extremely vulnerable (CEV) pupils and staff should attend their education setting unless they are one of the very small number of pupils or staff under paediatric or other specialist care and have been advised by their GP or clinician not to attend. Pupils or staff who live with someone who is CEV should continue to attend their education setting as normal.


Further Government guidance is expected for those staff and pupils that are clinically extreme vulnerable and we will update you all as soon as possible during the summer holiday period.


The Government is clear that SEN schools should be open.  Therefore, all schools will open as planned in September and all pupils and students should attend their education setting.  We will review guidance and share more information at the beginning of the Autumn term.


To confirm - Trust Schools and Area Resource Bases will be taking time to:


  • Review and, where necessary, update risk assessments.
  • Make sure the system of controls is followed to reduce the risk to the lowest reasonably practicable level, including engaging, where appropriate, a testing programme.
  • Follow Public Health advice for any local outbreaks or changes in restrictions.
  • Communicate any changes in processes with parents, carers and staff.

To provide reassurance, I have outlined the considerations, based on current guidance, that all Trusts Schools and Area Resource Bases are reviewing over the summer holiday period for the beginning of the Autumn Term 2021:


  • Minimising contact with individuals who are required to self-isolate by ensuring they do not attend the setting.
  • Although face coverings are not mandatory, we will be reviewing use in Trust Schools and Area Resource Bases.
  • Ensuring everyone is advised to clean their hands thoroughly and more often than usual.
  • Ensuring good respiratory hygiene for everyone by continuing to promote the ‘catch it, bin it, kill it’ approach.
  • Maintaining enhanced cleaning, including cleaning frequently touched surfaces often, using standard products such as detergents.
  • Review and minimise, where appropriate, contact across the site and maintain social distancing wherever possible.
  • Keeping occupied spaces well ventilated.


In specific circumstances:


  • Ensuring that individuals wear the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) where necessary.
  • Promoting and engaging in asymptomatic testing, where appropriate/advised.


Response to any infection:


  • Promoting and engaging with the NHS Test and Trace process.
  • Managing and reporting confirmed cases of COVID-19 amongst the setting community.
  • Containing any outbreak by following local health protection team advice.


Trust Schools and Area Resource Bases continue to liaise with Public Health England and to follow Government guidance. We anticipate guidance changing before the beginning of the Autumn Term and I will write to you again on the 3rd September.


There is a lot of national information and communication messages which can be confusing and there is a lot of misinformation. It is important that if you have any questions, concerns or queries, that you contact your school and the Headteacher will answer any questions and/or provide support.  Please follow the usual procedures to report to school if your child will be absent.  


Thank you for your ongoing support, patience and cooperation. 


Yours sincerely


Guy Chappell


The Special Partnership Trust