Why it’s business as usual for St Albans primary school heads

PUBLISHED: 16:46 12 May 2020 | UPDATED: 16:46 12 May 2020

It's business as usual at St Albans primary schools...

It's business as usual at St Albans primary schools...

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St Albans’ primary schools are open for learning and it’s business as usual despite the lockdown!

That is the message from head teachers across the city, who said while most children are not able to come in to their school buildings at the moment, primary schools are most certainly open for business.

Not only are teachers working extremely hard to provide meaningful and worthwhile home learning experiences for all pupils, they have also opened their doors to children of key workers and other eligible children not just in term time but during Easter and bank holidays when they have been needed.

This week primary heads from across St Albans met online to discuss their experiences of leading their schools through the challenging and ever-changing times of the COVID-19 lockdown.

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Using video conferencing technology, the St Albans Primary Heads Consortium shared the many creative ideas their schools are using to ensure that children’s education continues, but also agreed parents have been doing a fantastic job as home-school ‘teachers’; balancing their own workload with supporting the education of their children at home, making sure that any disruption to learning is kept to a minimum.

Cunningham Hill Junior School head teacher, Justine Elbourne-Cload, said: “We have been truly overwhelmed by how quickly our staff and children have adapted in these difficult times and are so grateful for the positivity we have received from our parents for all we are doing to keep children engaged, positive and learning whilst in lockdown.”

Justine even shared some of her fellow head teachers’ thoughts on ITV News on Monday.

Alex Lindley, head at Fleetville Infant School, said: “Heads aren’t planning to re-open schools, in reality they have never closed. We’re just planning to adapt again. Following the announcement from the Prime Minister on Sunday, teachers now face months of changing provision on a day by day basis, responding to the gradual easing of rules regarding the lockdown.”

Cathy Longhurst, head at Mandeville Primary School added: “Unfortunately, head teachers hear the news with everyone else in the Government daily press briefings. We do not get advanced notice to plan how to respond. We are very cautious about any plans to bring more children back into school, and will only do so when we can be sure that safety measures are in place

“It is such a challenging time for all of us, but the partnership between schools and families has never been stronger in St Albans.”


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