It has been lovely to see all the children back at school and a particular warm welcome to new P1 pupils and parents. We enjoyed hearing about what they have been doing in the holidays and we have been really impressed with the way that they have coped with the new routines and procedures in school today. We also have a new sounding bell so that has been something else to get used to today. All children are now familiar with this.
Thank you to the children and parents who were observing the 2m Social Distancing during drop off and pick up. This helps to keep us all safe and we really appreciate your support in ensuring that everyone is following Scottish Government advice. We were all really impressed with how the children lined up at the designated door/gate this morning.
Now that the P1 parents have been able to come to the door with their children today we will be having cones set up tomorrow so that all children can line up at the correct point at the gate. The cones will have the class name on them. Please make sure that when you line up at the cone you are maintaining your 2m Social distancing from other children and adults. The cones will also be out at the end of the day and the children will be lined up. This will still be at the same gate. The order that the P1s will be dismissed is P1A (Mrs Meade), P1B (Miss Carson) and P1/2 Mrs Amphlett/Mrs MacRae.
Please could P2 parents from (Mrs Macrae’s class) wait outside the main entrance at the end of the day as the children will be released from this exit from Thursday. That means drop off at ASC gate in the morning at 9am as you did today, but collect from main door at 2.45pm.
We hope that the children have enjoyed their first day back and are full of stories of what they did in school today. We look forward to welcoming them back tomorrow.
We are all very much looking forward to the children returning to school next week. I can now confirm that Inshes Primary will be open to all pupils from Wednesday 12th August.
We hope that we have been able to explain all the detail of this in the letter that is being sent out by email to all parents today but as always if there are any questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me. I have also put the link below.
I would like to highlight the following points in the letter:
- Breakfast Club will not start on Wednesday but will commence from Thursday 13th August.
- After School Club will start from Wednesday 12th August.
- There will be no clubs such as badminton, football, Brownies etc until at least after the October holidays.
- There will be staggered start/end times and we have designated entrance and exit points.
- Hand sanitiser will be used at entrance points and hand washing will be carried out throughout the day.
- Children will not be wearing masks in school but staff will be wearing masks/visors if they are unable to maintain 2m Social Distancing and full PPE will be used for situations involving intimate care or where a child has shown symptoms in school.
- We are not able to have parents in the building at the moment. If you need to drop something off at the office e.g. medication, please keep to the 2m SD guidance. If there is someone already in the foyer, please wait outside until they have left.
- Mrs Bruce (Childcare Manager) is updating all nursery families with additional information this afternoon.
We will continue to update our information as new guidance is received from Scottish Government and Highland Council.
The weather is looking really nice today! I hope that you all enjoy the rest of your holidays and that you and your child/children are looking forward to school reopening.
Please click on the link below to open the updated FAQs for parents that we received today from Nicky Grant, Head of Education.
I hope that you have all been enjoying your summer holidays and have been able to take advantage of the nice weather (when we have had it!) to meet up with friends and family.
You will have seen the First Minister’s announcement at the end of last week stating that schools would be able to reopen for a full return. Further information will be coming out in the next few days with individual school specific information but I wanted to keep you updated with the latest information we have received over the weekend.
Please see parent letter below from Nicky Grant, Head of Education. She has also included a FAQ for parents. The office staff are also emailing out the letters below to all parents.
The following link also contains the latest updates.
I hope you find the information above helpful and I will be in touch throughout the week with further updates as well as giving more specific information as to what this will look like for our Inshes children. We are all looking forward to welcoming the children back to school and hearing what they have been up to over the holidays.
I hope you all enjoy the rest of the holidays,
Highland Council’s emergency keyworker childcare hubs to cease as education settings reopen in August
At today’s (30 July) full meeting of The Highland Council, Members agreed that the Council ceases its provision for key worker childcare on 10 August 2020 at the latest, depending on the circumstances of each location.
This decision follows the announcement made by the Scottish Government that the requirement for local authorities to provide free keyworker childcare ends on 31 July.
The Leader of the Highland Council, Cllr Margaret Davidson, said: “I would like to thank our hub volunteers who have dedicated their time to help us to provide this essential service of emergency childcare to keyworkers across the region”.
“I would also like to thank our partners, High Life Highland and Eden Court, who supported our provision of this service. Together, we have been able to create a safe location for Highland children during this period of recovery from the covid-19 pandemic”.
Keyworker childcare hubs were set up in Highland in response to the rapidly escalating coronavirus outbreak in March 2020, when the Scottish Government made the decision to close all schools and Local Authority Early Learning and Childcare settings.
During this period of closure, the Highland Council opened up to 15 Keyworker Childcare Hubs with additional support from partners, in order to provide emergency childcare for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, to ensure that key workers had continuing access to appropriate childcare. During the summer holiday period the Highland Council area key worker hub network, saw provision provided across in excess of 50 different settings, facilitating provision for around 400 children of Highland area keyworker parents and carers.
We are now entering phase three of the Scottish Government’s route map out of lockdown, meaning alternative childcare provision is restarting in Highland communities, and education settings are aiming for a full return of pupils on 12 August.
Today’s announcement from the First Minister is very much what we have been anticipating and preparing for in our return to Highland education settings. It is a great reassurance that we can now continue with our work to achieve a full return of pupils and staff, including those who were previously shielding, in August.
Chair of Education Cllr John Finlayson welcomed the news. He said: “As always, the safety and wellbeing of our pupils, their families and our staff remain our priority. Officers are working to ensure Highland schools meet the Government and our parents expectations on safety measures such as ventilation, good hygiene practices and improved cleaning regimes.
We will continue to be guided by Scottish Government advice, and have contingency plans in place if we should need them. Officers will be reviewing our communications following this announcement, and information will be issued over the coming days to parents, carers and school staff. I am sure all stakeholders, will be pleased and relieved to hear that as normal as possible a return to school, is now confirmed.”
Please click on the link below for updated information regarding the ELC from Highland Council. Thank you.
It has been a term like no other we have seen in our lifetimes. I am so proud of how our Inshes Community have responded to the challenges we have faced. A huge thank you to all of the pupils, staff and parents for all their efforts with online learning and supporting one another.
To our P7s, I wish you all the very best as you move to Millburn, IRA or Culloden. I hope you have enjoyed your time at Inshes and are looking forward to the next step on your journey. You have been a fantastic P7 and you should be proud of everything you have achieved!
To our fantastic Parent Council, thank you for all of your help and support, especially during school closures. A particular thanks to Linsay Campbell, Chairperson, Daria Starinska, Secretary and Gail Robertson, Treasurer who are all moving on from their positions. I really appreciate all that you have done for the school during your time with us.
Here is Highland Council’s FAQs for parents and carers which has just been issued today.
I will continue to update the blog as we get more information from Scottish Government about the planned model of return in August. Hopefully it will be 100% and we will be able to welcome all children back on Wednesday 12th August. A reminder that Tuesday 11th August is an In-Service day.
I wish you all a lovely summer,
Reminder of some safety info for Chromebooks:-
- Remember that even if your Chromebook is being used for personal use, you are still bound by the council’s Acceptable Use Policy and expected to use the device appropriately at all times
- Only leave your device plugged in when you are with the Chromebook
- Don’t leave your device charging overnight
- Make sure your charger is not covered and air can circulate to assist with cooling
Google Chat and Google Meet
During the summer holidays Google Chat and Google Meet will be turned off. Class teachers have explained this to the children this week. They will be turned on again when we return to school in August.
At today’s Economy and Infrastructure Committee members gave their full support to progress made with the Spaces for People programme in Highland following the news that the Council has been successful in receiving a further £1.2M of funding.
Following a successful award of £752,954 from Scottish Government’s Spaces for People fund, the Council is delivering a series of active travel interventions in Aviemore, Dingwall, Fort William, Inverness, Nairn, Wick and Portree in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. News of the additional £1.2M will allow more measures to be rolled out in Aviemore, Fort William, Portree, Thurso, and Wick and provide a specific Highland-wide rapid response award to tackle issues reported to the Council.
The temporary interventions provide a rapid response to the pandemic to support essential workers and communities to physically distance when they walk, wheel or cycle. All the interventions are temporary, and the council can rapidly amend and change the proposals.
Chair of the Committee, Councillor Trish Robertson said: ” Sustainable active travel for leisure and for travelling from A to B has never been so popular and the Spaces for People project to improve safety for everyone will, I am sure, encourage more individuals and families to continue to enjoy the benefits of walking and cycling. It’s great news that our application for additional funding for phase 2 has been successful. As well as physical and mental health benefits of regular exercise, the increase in walking and cycling is also an important factor in our transition to an economy based on net-zero carbon emissions.”
A special consultation portal allows stakeholders and the public to comment on all of the measures and give their feedback. Officials have continued to engage with key stakeholders, like Inverness BID, the emergency services and local businesses. The measures being delivered are flexible and the consultation portal means that by continuing an online conversation, the council can monitor and respond quickly to any issues.
Over 854 comments have been logged through the portal with 73% of the comments in support of the interventions. 2,400 people have also signed a petition to urge the Council to go further than the current proposals that are being implemented.
Cllr Robertson added: “This period of lockdown has given us all, no matter where we live, a different understanding and appreciation of space. I hope that we can learn from this experience and make walking, wheeling and cycling a bigger part of our everyday travel, which will have multiple other benefits to our health, climate and air quality, not to mention reducing congestion.”
“Already we have seen a reduction in traffic and an increase in active travel during the pandemic which we want to encourage and build upon. It is crucial that we keep momentum going to maximise the public health benefits of this project.”
The Highland Council now intends to submit a third funding bid and if successful, further interventions across Highland will be implemented.