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St Joseph's Catholic

Primary School, Withnell

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Corona virus update

Remote learning and access to technology


This is our first day of full remote learning. As a result I need to turn my attention to access to technology. In order to access the home learning most effectively your children will need access to an electronic device which can connect to the internet. This could be a phone, tablet, laptop or PC.


Currently we are using Zoom for our daily contact with the children. In the same way access to most SMART devices will give access to these meetings.


With this in mind I need to ascertain what levels of access children have to technology in the home and I would appreciate a swift reply to this email. Please email me back by no later than 8.00pm Wednesday 6th January.

Please choose which statement applies to you and email back to



  • All my children/my child  have/has access to a device and can access remote learning
  • We have access to a device but my children need to share: Please indicate how many devices between how many children
  • We have no access to any device for remote learning




Key Worker Places 


Thank you for responding and providing proof of your key worker status. Currently I have a full list of those who are eligible for places. In order to help with my planning, I would ask two things from parents: 

Where you have the option of looking after your child at home -please do this. 


This means that we have fewer children in school exposing the staff and children to less risk and thus minimising the risk of infections. I know that many parents have taken this option but I would implore that where you can take this option please do so.  


Considering what I have asked, please let me know if you require place for the remainder of this week and next week so that I can plan the staff timetable accordingly.  

I will need an immediate response to this – please respond by 8.00pm.   


Please email me at and complete the following template: 


Please copy/paste and complete the following template and email to me on the above address by 8.00pm 


I can confirm that I have key worker status: YES/NO____________________________ 

Employer: ________________________________ 

I can confirm that I have no alternative childcare YES/NO_____________________ 

I require a place in school on the following days: (please indicate with a YES)

Monday 4th  

Tuesday 5th  

Wednesday 6th  

Thursday 7th  

Friday 8th  




Monday 11th  

Tuesday 12th  

Wednesday  13th  

Thursday 14th  

Friday 15th  






Letter from Mr Lawman  (Monday 4th January)

School Reopening January 2021


As of Monday 4th January, school will reopen as usual. Clearly the speculation about whether or not schools should reopen has led to  increased levels of anxiety. At present we are taking our guidance from the local Public Health teams and any decision made will be informed by what they inform us. Speculation from the media and social media is often unhelpful in situations like this and we are regularly kept up to date with the changing situation locally from the people who know.


We have 2 main concerns. Ensure that ALL members of the school community (this includes staff, children and families at home) are as safe as is possible. Ensure that the children do not miss out on any more of their education. 


At present school will continue with only slight changes to the day to day management. For the time being I have taken the decision to cancel sports clubs until further notice.


I cannot deny that we will be planning for remote education some time in the future. If the same pattern of infection that has occurred in London creeps north then I can only assume that schools will close and we will switch to remote learning. With the entire school being taught at home we will face the logistical challenge of ensuring that all children have access to a computer and WIFI. I will be contacting parent this week to see how the land lies in respect of this. 


I would also urge parents to consult with the KEY WORKERS list below and make plans for the closure of the Breakfast and After School Club. Both clubs are not included as part of our statutory provision and for reasons that are too numerous to go into now, I cannot guarentee that they will remain open: please plan for their closure in the event of a school closure. 


I would ask all parents to be mindful of the fact that we share a site with Fr Peter and Jane - both of whom are vulnerable. I would respectfully ask that all visitors to school respect the HANDS, FACE SPACE mantra.


In the meantime, thank you for your support.


God bless 



Critical workers and vulnerable children who can access schools or educational settings - GOV.UK

This guidance has been updated to include information about the return to school and college in January, and includes the addition of those whose work is critical to EU Transition to the list of ...



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