Carole Self Learning for Life Partnership [163] 08 September 2020
Wheelock LAB   Minutes   19/05/2020
Virtual  Tuesday, May 19, 2020  5pmChair: David Booth   Clerk: Carole Self   
FINAL: The minutes are confirmed and locked.
Governors Attending: >Helen Sweeney, David Booth, Hazel Harris, Kim French, Samantha Davies 
Governors Apologies: >Angie Robinson D.L, Matt Pearson
Non Governors Attending: >Carole Self
Non Governors Apologies: >
Agenda Item 1  Welcome and Apologies for Absence
MINUTE  The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting.  He confirmed that MP had given his apologies for the last meeting so asked that be recorded accordingly.

Apologies for absence for this meeting were received from AR and accepted by Members.
DECISION  Members received and accepted the apologies for absence from AR.
Agenda Item 2  Declaration of Personal/Pecuniary Interests
Agenda Item 3  Declaration of Any Other Business
MINUTE  The Headteacher declared some confidential business that would be discussed under that agenda.
Agenda Item 4  Part One Minutes of the Last Meeting
MINUTE  Members reviewed the minutes of the last meeting dated 17th March 2020 and agreed these as a true and accurate record.
DECISION  Members approved the minutes of the meeting dated 17th March 2020 as a true and accurate record
Agenda Item 5  Matters Arising
MINUTE Members reviewed the matters arising as follows:
  • Members to update declarations of interest on Trust Governor and CS to undertake face to face training on this at the next appropriate meeting.  In view of the inability to undertake training on Trust Governor, CS agreed to request declarations from Members in order that she could update the system centrally.  By CS
  • Upload the learning walk on writing on Trust Governor.  Action Completed
  • Members to undertake PREVENT training.  DB outstanding and to complete ahead of next meeting
  • Discuss the Trust's vision and aim at the next Chairs Forum - item postponed during the Covid 19 crisis
  • Follow up with Matt Pearson the reason for his absence.  Action completed as recorded as part of these minutes
  • Chase up certificates for safeguarding training.  HS confirmed that she had chased but that this was still outstanding
Agenda Item 6  Headteacher's Report
MINUTE The Headteacher provided a verbal update on the following areas as agreed:

Staff Health and Wellbeing - the Headteacher reported that staff were doing very well and no staff had had any illness during the closure.  A Couple of staff were reported as either shielding or classed as vulnerable.  The Headteacher confirmed that all staff were expected to work, unless they were shielding or signed off by their GP.  Members were advised that to date no-one had done this.  A couple of midday assistants were reported to have requested unpaid leave rather than return to school when it re-opened in the first instance, this was in line with Trust guidance. 
Health and safety - the Headteacher confirmed that the school was only using limited classrooms with KS2 and reception out of bounds.  However now the school was planning to re-open staff were coming in to set up and be ready and the school would have a deep clean during the half term.
Pupil attendance - Members were advised that there were between 10 and 15 children in each day, most of which were children of Key Workers.  Two vulnerable children had attended every day and one EHCP child attended sometimes.
Remote learning - this was reported as going well with Teachers providing fortnightly learning packs which included daily maths and literacy projects as well as a range of activities and ideas to keep children busy and engaged.  Some Teachers had provided storytime via video and some children were posting videos on the website of them undertaking activities with their families, although this was the same families each week.
Safeguarding - Members were advised that staff were making either weekly or fortnightly calls to families, with the most vulnerable families being contacted twice a week.  The Headteacher advised that many telephone calls were not now being answered or calls were very short as families grew used to the "new normal".  Free School Meal Vouchers were reported to be being obtained through the national scheme although this had been overrun and schools found it difficult to access the vouchers although this was reported to be alot better now.  The Headteacher confirmed that she was awaiting clarification as to whether the scheme would be extended if schools re-opened or whether children would be expected to have lunch at school.
Transition - the Headteacher advised that none of the High Schools were running any transition days although they had offered their staff to come and talk to chidlren at the school however this was not in line with the no visitors policy.  Members were advised that this was likely to take place remotely.  High Schools were reported to be sending learning ideas to the staff to undertake with Year 6 children on their return to school. Q. Can you now tell the new starters from September who there Teacher will be?  KF confirmed that the licence for Tapestry had been extended so new Parents could be enrolled, there would also be a letter sent to all new Parents; videos developed showing the school and the children.  KF was hopeful that parents would also introduce their children via this method and show the school what they had been doing.  Members were advised that normally children attend 4 days per week as part of their transition however the transition period may be extended to 2 weeks for shorter periods of time as this would enable the Year 1 children to use the classroom in the afteroon.  KF advised that she was working with the EYFS leads across the Trust to agree a way forward for September.
Return to school - the Headteacher reminded Members of the letter sent the previous week to Parents about the planned "bubble system" and she asked whether there were any questions about this over and above those raised by AR ahead of the meeting.  Members thought there was still alot of What ifs" and uncertainty so it was difficult to ask questions that the school could not answer.  Members noted that the Executive Headteacher had offered to answer questions as much as he could. Members were advised that a decision about re-opening would not be known until the 28th May 2020 with the expectation that schools open on the 1st June.  The Headteacher advised that as the school was shut for half term they would defer opening, if agreed, until the 8th June 2020.  Members were advised that Trustees were meeting the next day to confirm the decision to open and when.  The Headteacher confirmed that in either case the school would be open from the 1st June for children of Keyworkers and vulnerable children.  The Chair thought it was clear that the Trust had made a decision about the 1st June opening however accepted that this might now be the 8th June.  The Headteacher advised that at present there were 13 reception children; 17 Year 1 children and 29 Year 6 children plus 15 Keyworker children who had requested to attend.  Members were advised that those Parents that had not confirmed were not outright No's to attending, they just needed further consideration time.  The Headteacher confirmed that the plan was to have 2 "bubbles" in Reception and Year 1 and 3 for Year 6 which would provide enough capacity if Parents changed their minds and it was easier for staff to manage as well.  Members were advised that children would be with the same staff as much as possible and that staff would be on a 2 week on, 2 week off rota.  Members were advised that children in each "bubble" would not be expected to self isolate from each other however staff will be required to do so as much as possible, in particular by limiting close face contact.  Members agreed that it was important that Parents understand this as there was concern that children were going to be isolated in boxes.

Members were advised that children in Year 1 and Year 6 were being set up with learning stations and they would have lunch in their classroom but go out for playtime.  The Headteacher confirmed that the advice was that this approach was safe provided that children in different "bubbles" did not mix.

Members agreed to take each of AR's question as per her e-mail in turn:

  • Will siblings of the same age be in the same bubble ? Commonsense says yes but I thought I'd check -and will siblings in different but designated years be in bubbles on the same days?  The Headteacher confirmed that this was the case.
  • In this environment , are we able to cater for our SEND children or should we be trying to attract additional resource? The Headteacher confirmed that there were 3 EHCP children, 2 of which were being kept at home.  One child was attending 2 days per week and this would carry on although it would depend on the risk assessment as this would involve one member of staff for that bubble.
  • If parents are working away from the home and cannot quickly get to collect a child who is poorly or are unable to make pick or drop off , can another person who may not be from that household cover? The Headteacher confirmed that it was important that Parents were able to pick their children up straight away, upon arrival Parents would have their temperature checked.
  • Are drinking vessels required to be disposable (as packed lunches are) or are we continuing with free flowing water and reusable containers from home? The Headteacher confirmed that drinking vessels would have to be washed at home each night.
  • Are we planning for the time when all children return permanently and will that generate new ways of operating? The Headteacher confirmed that it was too early at this stage to plan for this.
  • Are we gathering feedback from staff, children and parents to debrief and learn about the highs and lows of the online and distance learning we are undertaking ? Reviewing this could help us look at new ways of learning and enable us to learn about best practice ( as well as what didn't work) should this sort of situation occur again later in the year or at some time in the future. This may also help to feed in to appraisals for teaching staff and their own personal development plans? The Headteacher confirmed that all feedback was shared amongst the staff.  Members were advised that some Parents felt that the learning material needed to be printed so the school was going to be sending learning packs to homes after the half term which would not only help parents but also help with planning for Teachers.  The Headteacher confirmed therefore that the children in school would be doing the same work as those working remotely.
  • Will we be providing additional learning opportunities over the school holidays in preparation for a September return or are we treating it as a normal holiday? The Headteacher confirmed that schools had not been asked to open over the summer holidays not even for keyworkers and staff would need some time to recover and in any case it was felt that staff would not agree.
  • How will we evaluate the effect on the children in terms of their learning and development?  The Headteacher advised that the process was the same as when a Teacher takes a new class after the summer although she accepted that the gaps may be greater.
  • Will we be looking to provide support to children who have encountered health related issues (physical or mental) ? Ditto for staff. The Headteacher confirmed that the school would aim to provide Treetops from September for children with emotional issues as a result of the pandemic.  With regards to staff, Members were advised that the school had SAS health insurance so staff suffering with anxiety could access this for sessions if this could not be addressed through the support of colleagues.
  • What had we planned or expected that will have to go by the board as a result of this - and do parents need to be informed so expectations are not raised? The Headteacher confirmed that all the "fun" activitives for Year 6 including the leavers assembly has had to be cancelled.  Members were advised that Teachers would undertake to do "nice" things with the children though.  

Agenda Item 13  Policy Review/Approval
MINUTE  Members approved the addendum to the Safeguarding policy in relation to Covid 19.  
DECISION  Members approved the addendum to the Safeguarding policy in relation to Covid 19.
Agenda Item 14  Communications to/from MAT
MINUTE The Chair expressed concern that there had been no communications to LABs and he would raise this as part of his Chairs Report.  He accepted that there was more than usual contact with Headteachers which was reassuring but a virtual meeting with Chairs of LABs and the Trust should be considered.
Agenda Item 15  Date of Next Meeting
MINUTE The date of the next meeting was confirmed as 30th June 2020.
   Governor Agreed Actions set during this meeting:  0
Wheelock LAB Summer 1 Part 1   dated:  19/05/2020
 Minutes approved by Carole Self