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Headteachers' update 16 July 2020


Dear Parent/Carer,

I am writing to provide details of the planned reopening of the school to all students from the start of next term. I will write again towards the end of the summer break to provide more details for individual year groups and to respond to any changes in the current situation and how these may impact our plans.

As you may be aware, when all students return in September the school will be required to operate in a very different way to the way it did back in March. Significant safety measures will be put in place and social distancing will still be required. This will require significant planning and induction for all staff and additional support for those students in Year 7 joining the school for the first time. Therefore, the following measures will be put in place:

  • Year 7 will return to school from Thursday 3rd September.  Students should arrive for 8.35am.

  • Years 8 and 11 will start on Monday 7th September students should arrive for 9.00am.

  • Years 9 and 10 will start on Monday 7th September students should arrive for 9.30am.

  • From Tuesday 8th September all students will be expected to arrive between 8.35am and 8.45am.

  • All year groups will work in a separate part of the school and will be kept apart throughout the school day.

  • Lesson times will be altered and arrangements for break and lunchtimes will also need to be adjusted to maintain social distancing.

  • Students in Year 7 and 8 will remain in their form groups for all lessons.

  • Students will be based in the same room for the vast majority of lessons, except where specialist accommodation is required.

  • Assemblies and other large gatherings of students and visitors will not be taking place until further notice.

  • Students will be encouraged to regularly wash their hands and hand sanitiser will be available in all rooms.

  • The school’s behaviour policy and code of conduct will be updated to take account of the measures we need to put in place.  I know you will understand we will have strict non-negotiables to make our school covid safe for students and staff

  • All students will be required to be in school uniform except on the days when they have practical PE lessons where their PE kit will need to be worn with a school blazer to avoid using the changing facilities.

  • We expect all students to arrive at school properly equipped to learn, the sharing of equipment will not be possible when we return. The following are our minimum expectations of what each student should bring:

  • A school bag, large enough to hold A4 folders and books without folding

  • Black pen (more than one is advised)

  • Green pen for responding to marking

  • HB pencil (a range of other grades may be useful)

  • Pencil Sharpener 

  • Soft Rubber  

  • 30 cm Ruler

  • Basic Geometry Set

  • Scientific calculator 

  • English dictionary

  • Reading book (from home or the school library)

  • In light of recent announcements, all students must have a washable face covering with them and a plastic bag to store them in.

  • Public transport should be avoided by all students and whilst contract buses can be used face coverings must be worn.

  • As you are aware, attendance will be compulsory from September and the school will work with parents to alleviate any concerns that may exist.


As I stated at the start of this letter, more detailed information will be provided towards the end of the summer break.  This will allow us to adjust our plans to any change in government messaging or policy. 

I would  like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support during this challenging time.  I wish you and your family some well deserved rest over the summer period and we look forward to welcoming all students back in September.


Warm regards,


Fiona Pierson


St Helena School

Sheepen Road, Colchester, CO3 3LE 


Phone: 01206 572253

The Sigma Trust t/a St Helena School

Walton Road, Clacton-on-Sea, CO15 6DZ

Registered Company No:  07926573

Edited Image 2017-05-12 14-07-29

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