Dear Parents/ Carers,
The extreme weather warnings are getting more and more serious, and advice to schools is now for school leaders to think about their school buildings and ensure that they are safe for children to work in.
I have been in contact with local schools, and we are all trying to work out how we can best protect the children and staff in our schools. We all have different circumstances- some with lots of glass in their building, some with air conditioning, some with sheltered play areas, etc. This means we will not all be taking the same actions as each other.
The forecast is for temperatures of 38 degrees tomorrow. In parts of the school building, it will feel even hotter than that, due to the amount of glass used in construction, and the lack of shade.
St John’s are going to take the following steps:
Please do not send your child into Nursery unless you have to. Staff will be in school for anyone that can’t get childcare. The Nursery building gets really hot, and there is very little shade outside. The glass roof and shelters make the temperature inside, even hotter.
Reception, Year 1 and Year 2:
The classrooms downstairs become unbearably hot. We will leave all windows and doors open with the blinds down, but it can become stifling. If you can, please collect your children at 12.30pm tomorrow to avoid the worst of the heat. If nobody is available to collect your child, they can stay in school and if we have low enough numbers left, we will take them upstairs into the air conditioned corridor.
Years 3, 4, 5 and 6:
The upstairs classrooms have air conditioning so children can stay safely in cooler conditions. We will be continuing as normal for these classes.
However, if you are collecting your younger child at 12.30pm, I would advise you to collect their older siblings at the same time so that you do not have to make another journey to school in the extreme heat.
Don’t worry about school uniform. The priority over the next two days must be to keep cool. Don’t worry about trying to stick to clothes in the school colours. Just dress your child in the thinnest, loosest clothing possible. Think about shorts/skirt/leggings and a t-shirt, or a summer dress. We want the children to be as cool as possible.
Please ensure clothing is suitable and safe for school (no ankle-length skirts or dresses, no heels, no football tops, no offensive slogans)
Please send your child with a water bottle. They can refill it as often as they need to throughout the day.
Children should wear a sunhat (preferably wide brimmed) and sun screen. We will not be going out into the play areas as they afford no shade, and we will not be doing vigorous physical activity in PE lessons.
Year 3 will exit from the main doors. It will be sunny here, so please don't arrive too early as you will get very hot. Equally, don't come late as your child will be very hot waiting.
Year 4 will exit from the back of the hall- there is a gate into the park here, and it is shaded by trees. This will be more comfortable for parents to wait in.
Year 5 and 6 will exit through the doors that they go in through in the morning (the main building-between Nursery and Reception). Hopefully the trees will provide some shade here for parents.
Finally: if you feel that you would rather keep your child at home, we completely understand this and this will not compromise your child’s attendance figure.
There is further guidance here: