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Winnersh Primary School,

Winnersh, Berkshire RG41 5LH

Where Learning is an adventure

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    • Winnersh Primary School,
    • Greenwood Grove, Winnersh
    • Wokingham, Berkshire
    • RG41 5LH
    Tel: 0118 9782590

Frequently Asked Questions about Returning to School in September

Covid-19 FAQs for Full Re-Opening in September 2020

Frequently Asked Questions


The following information is based on government guidance. It may be subject to change.


1. When does the Autumn Term start?


We are going ahead with our two INSET Days on Tuesday 1st and Wednesday 2nd September as planned in order to complete our final preparations for the start of the new academic year.  The first day of term for the children will be Thursday 3rd September.   Our new Foundation children will be following their own timetable for the start of term.


2.  What is the best way to contact the school if I have a question or something I would like to discuss?


Prior to the start of term, please use our enquiries email which is being monitored throughout the holidays by the Senior Leadership Team:   Alternatively, please contact us by telephone from 1st September onwards on 0118 978 2590.


3. Which year groups are returning to school?


The government expects all children to return to school in September. School attendance will be mandatory from the beginning of the new academic year. For parents and carers of children of compulsory school age, this means that the legal duty on you as a parent to send your child to school regularly will apply.


4. What about families and children who have been shielding?


Shielding advice for all adults and children paused on 1st August.  This means, that the small number of pupils who will remain on the shielded patient list can also return to school, as can those who have family members who are shielding.


Some pupils who remain under the care of a specialist health professional may need to discuss their care with their health professional before returning to school in September.  Where children are not able to attend school as parents are following clinical and/or Public Health advice, the government has said that the absence should not be penalised.


If you have concerns about your child returning to school because you consider they may have other risk factors, please contact us to talk about how we can support you.


A small number of pupils will be unable to attend in line with Public Health advice because they are self-isolating and have had symptoms or a positive test result themselves, or because they are a close contact of someone who has Coronavirus (COVID-19). If your child is unable to attend school for this reason, please contact us to talk about how we can support you


5. How big will the classes be? 


Classes will return to full numbers from September with precautions in place across school.  


6. Will the schools have any ‘bubbles’?


We are creating year group bubbles of 60 children. This will give us the flexibility to run small groups across the two classes, such as phonics or spelling groups, and to come together occasionally for year group activities. The bubbles will have separate play areas at break and lunch time.


7. Can we guarantee that social distancing takes place?


We will, of course, do our best to support social distancing, but parents must understand that in returning to school, there is a very real likelihood that children will touch adults and one another, and come into close contact. The nature of the school site and the age of our children is such that this is unavoidable. We can help to alleviate the risks through careful hygiene procedures.


8. How do I explain social distancing to my child?


Some experts suggest not giving young children too many details about the science behind social distancing.  Keep the message simple and positive using language that your child will understand. There are also lots of videos and other resources available on the internet.


9. What hygiene measures will be in place to keep my child safe?


We will:


  • ensure that sufficient handwashing facilities are available
  • clean surfaces that children are touching frequently


We will ensure that adults and children:


  • clean their hands on arrival at school
  • frequently wash their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds and dry thoroughly
  • are encouraged not to touch their mouth, eyes and nose
  • use a tissue or elbow to cough or sneeze and use bins for tissue waste (‘catch it, bin it, kill it’)


We will also:


  • ensure that help is available for children who have trouble cleaning their hands independently
  • where possible, ensure that all spaces are well-ventilated, using natural ventilation (opening windows)
  • prop doors open, where safe to do so (bearing in mind fire safety and safeguarding), to limit use of door handles and aid ventilation


10. What should my child bring to school each day?


We do not want your child to bring any unnecessary items into school.  They will need a book bag, a water bottle, a P.E. kit and a sunhat if sunny.  Your child may also need a lunch box (see section on lunches).  Please, please, please label all items as we will be unable to store lost, unnamed items.


11. Will everyone arrive at school at the same time causing an increase in risk?


We will no longer be opening the school gates and playground at 8.30am. The school has organised staggered drop-off and collection time for pupils. It is important that you only arrive at your allocated time. Only one parent or carer should accompany their child/children to school to minimise the risk of lots of adults on site. Parents will not be able to enter classrooms and should leave the site immediately after dropping your child/children off.  If you feel your child is confident to do so, allow him/her to walk into school unaccompanied.


Times are as follows:


Year Group

Drop Off

Pick Up

Entry/Exit Point




Side Gate




Main Front Gate (small side gate)




Main Front Gate (main path)




Main Front Gate (small side gate)




Main Front Gate (main path)




Main Front Gate (main path)




Main Front Gate (small side gate)


There will be markings on the ground to indicate routes and lines to show your child/children where to wait outside the classroom. If you have more than one child, you should be able to plan a drop-off and pick up route.


12. Will the school take my child’s temperature every day?


No, this is not considered necessary within schools.


13. Will staff and children wear masks or PPE?


In line with government guidance, staff and children are not required to wear face masks when attending school. If you choose for your child to wear a mask to school, then your child will be responsible for their own mask. Staff at school cannot guarantee that your child will wear their mask at all times, and they will not be able to help children to adjust their masks. If your child gets hurt or is unwell, the adult helping them will put on gloves and a face visor/mask to assist them.


14. Will my child need to wear school uniform?


Children will need to wear their uniform as usual.  This should be washed regularly. Children will also need to bring their P.E. kit which should be taken home at the end of each week to be washed. Children will be doing most of their P.E. outside. Therefore, please provide trainers suitable for outdoor activities and a plain-coloured tracksuit as the weather gets colder.  Please, please, please label all items as we will be unable to store lost, unnamed items.


15. Will we allow visitors and volunteers into school?


School leaders have been asked to minimise the number of visitors to the school where possible.  Therefore, we will not be able to ask parent volunteers into school for the first half of the Autumn Term.  We will keep this under review.


16. What will classrooms look like?


We have made small changes to the classrooms to support distancing, including seating children in Years 1 to 6 side by side and facing forwards, rather than face to face or grouped around a table.  We have removed unnecessary furniture to make more space.


17. How will breaktimes and lunchtime work to ensure children are safe?


Breaktimes and lunchtimes will be staggered for each year group.  Contact with children in other year groups will be reduced as much as possible.  Caterlink has not yet shared its arrangements for school meals. At this stage, we anticipate that the first few weeks will be a packed lunch service only with the aim of getting a full hot meal service back up and running as soon as possible. We recommend that you provide your child/children with a packed lunch for the first week back but we will keep you updated.


18. Will my child be expected to share resources, such as pens and pencils?


Children will be expected to have their own pen/pencil and the class teacher will let you know how this will work as arrangements vary across year groups. In Foundation, Year 1 and Year 2, all equipment will be provided by the school. Any resources that are shared (e.g. school iPads) will be thoroughly cleaned after use.


19. Will the school have assemblies?


There will be no daily whole school gatherings. Assemblies will take place in classrooms.


20. My child is feeling anxious about coming back to school. How can I prepare him/her?


You need to prepare your child by talking about what school was like and how it will be different. Use the transition booklets to support these discussions. Sharing social stories can be really helpful for young children and help to express the situation in a clear, factual way.


21. Will children go straight back into normal lessons following the National Curriculum?


Many families have gone through an incredible period of change.   The initial focus, for as long as we feel necessary, will be on the personal, social and emotional aspects of learning to support children’s well-being.  However, we are very aware that children need to catch up on the learning they have missed and this will be our key priority for the year.


22. Will SATS return in Years 2 and 6 this year?


Yes, the government has said that statutory primary assessments will take place in Summer 2021. The Early Years Foundation Stage Profile, and all existing statutory Key Stage 1 and 2 assessments, should return in 2020 to 2021.


23. Will Energy Kids and After School Clubs run?


We are expecting EnergyKidz to return for Breakfast and After School provision but this has yet to be finalised. We are also hoping to run our own After School Clubs and further details will follow.


24. Will the School Reception Area be open once school returns?


If you have an enquiry or something that you need to share with the school, you should email or call the school wherever possible, using:  You should only come into School Reception if it is essential.


25. Will there be any trips or visits?


We will keep this under review once the term is underway. Currently, there are no visits planned for September.


26. How can I speak to the class teacher if we are social distancing?


Because of the need to get children into school in the morning and in order to supervise their handwashing, it will be only be possible to pass on brief messages at drop-off and pick-up times. If you would like to speak to a teacher, please email or telephone the school. We will arrange for the teacher to call you back.


27. Will there be a Parents’ Evening in the Autumn?


Our aim is to organise a Parents’ Evening in the first few weeks of returning to school. However, the government is currently advising against gatherings of parents on the school site so appointments may be offered by telephone or online. Further details will follow.


28. What will happen if a child in the class shows symptoms?


If anyone becomes unwell with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature in an education or childcare setting, they must be sent home and advised to follow the COVID-19: guidance for households with possible coronavirus infection guidance.


If a child is awaiting collection from school, they will be moved to a room where they can be isolated behind a closed door and with appropriate adult supervision.


If a child needs to go to the toilet whilst waiting to be collected, they will use a separate toilet.  The bathroom will be cleaned and disinfected before being used by anyone else.  PPE will be worn by staff caring for the child whilst they await collection if a distance of 2 metres cannot be maintained (such as for a very young child or a child with complex needs).  In an emergency, we will call 999.


29. What happens if there is a confirmed case of Coronavirus in school? 


All staff and pupils who are attending an education or childcare setting will have access to a test if they display symptoms of Coronavirus, and are encouraged to get tested.


Where the child or staff member tests negative, they can return to school and their fellow household members can end their self-isolation.


 Parents and carers should support us support us by:


  • ensuring that anyone who has Coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms does not attend school or college - this means if your child, or someone in your household, has symptoms you should not send them to school.
  • engaging with the NHS Test and Trace process so that cases can be identified and action taken - this means if your child develops symptoms, you should arrange for them to get a test and you should inform your school of the results of the test.


30. What is the process in the event of an outbreak?


We will follow the government’s guidance as follows:


If the school experiences an outbreak, either because we have two or more confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) among pupils or staff within 14 days, or we see an increase in pupil or staff absence rates due to suspected or confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19), we will need to contact our local Health Protection Team. This team will advise if additional action is required, though the closure of the whole school will generally not be necessary.


Where an outbreak in a school is confirmed, a mobile testing unit may be dispatched to test others who may have been in contact with the person who has tested positive. Testing will first focus on the person’s class, followed by their year group, then the whole school, if necessary.


If our local area sees a spike in infection rates that is resulting in localised community spread, decisions will be made on what measures to implement to help contain the spread. The government will be involved in decisions and will support individual schools to follow the health advice.


In all cases, where groups of pupils need to self-isolate or where a larger restriction of attendance at school is needed, the school should seek to ensure children’s education can continue remotely.