High levels of staff absence: Nursery Closure


Good afternoon, everyone.

Please read this post carefully as it contains important information which relates to our Nursery provision for the remainder of this academic year.

As I explained in my Dojo message yesterday, we have a rapidly increasing number of pupils and staff who are not in school as a result of self-isolation linked to Covid-19.

Staff absence is extremely high across the school at the moment. A high proportion of absences are linked to mandatory self-isolation.

We have made every effort to try and keep as many classes open as possible using all internal resources available to us as well as being forced to deploy high numbers of external agency support staff.

As you know, anyone who is identified as a contact of a positive Covid-19 case, under current rules, has to self-isolate for 10 days. This means that this current situation will be an ongoing problem for us.

This situation is so challenging for us as a school that I am very concerned about the ability to adequately staff all the classes in the school and therefore, under health and safety grounds, I feel I am forced to make a very difficult decision.

To remain open as a school, and be able to deploy staff in every classroom, I need to partially close the school.

Although I understand the difficulties this will create, I must prioritise compulsory school aged children across the school and therefore, I am forced to close our nursery provision as of Monday, 12th July until the end of term.

Therefore, the last day our nursery children will be able to come into school this academic year will be Friday, 9th July.

Nursery staff will be deployed around the school to cover for staff absence.

I have spoken at length with Nottingham City Local Authority Health and Safety Lead as well as the Nottingham City Early Years Team, who support this decision.

We will keep this situation under close review. Please be assured that we will make every effort to ensure that your child's class has a consistent member of staff teaching them. However, we cannot guarantee that we won't have further staff absence over the remainder of this term and therefore have to make further difficult decisions.

I am extremely sorry that I have had to make this decision. It is not a decision which I take lightly and it is definitely not one which I want to make at all. I must emphasise the fact that I feel it is impossible to safely keep the whole school open with our current staffing levels.

I know that we are not alone in having to make a decision like this as a large number of other schools across Nottingham City have had to take similar action as a result of staff absence linked to Covid-19. I know that this doesn't make the situation any easier for you but it does put it in context in the current Covid-19 climate.

Thank you for your understanding. I really do appreciate that this decision may put you in a very difficult position and I am sorry for that.

Mr Skirton