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Return to School details

See here for details about our return to school on 8th March.

1st March 2021


Dear Parents & Carers, 


We are really pleased that the time has finally come to welcome your children back to school beginning next Monday 8th March. The past 2 months have been extremely busy and difficult for everyone but a return to some normality in school should be beneficial for us all. The staff and I are really looking forward to seeing you all again!


Arrangements for the return are still being made but broadly speaking, they will be the same as before Christmas with a few small changes. Please see below for details.


The School Day


  • It is expected that all children who are not clinically shielding should be back in school from next Monday. 

  • Procedures for drop off will be as they were before Christmas. Three lines into the gate near to the church. The gates will be opened at 8.30am and we expect all children to be in school by 8.45am.

  • At the end of the day, we will have one line of parents which will enter via the main car gates. The one way system will be in place and you can collect your child or children from the same location as before Christmas. The only exception is 1AR who we are trialling collection from the classroom rather than the playground. 

  • We will open the gates at 3.05pm for parents to collect their children.

  • The one area that held up the system before Christmas was parents standing to try and speak to each other or staff on the back playground. Could we please remind you that if you need to speak to a member of staff that you pass a note or contact them via the school office. Staff have been asked to not relay messages to parents at the end of the day, please do not put them in a position that could be awkward and hold up the line by trying to start a conversation..

  • Please maintain social distancing at all times (including the queue outside the gates) and follow the one way system around the school.

  • If you wish your child to walk home by themselves then please contact your child's class teacher to tell them. Year 6 children will be let out without a parent automatically. unless you tell us otherwise.

  • The school building will be completely closed to parents, including the school office.

  • Lunches for those in Reception and KS1, eligible for free school meals or those who choose to pay will be packed lunches provided by the school. Please contact the school office ASAP if you wish to change your preference from before Christmas.

  • Breakfast and WASC will be running. They can be booked (or your name added to the waiting list) via the School Office for Breakfast Club or directly through WASC (details on the school website).


Safety for Everyone


  • Masks are required for all adults entering the school site. School staff will be wearing masks in shared spaces and maintaining social distancing.

  • Children will be in class sized “bubbles”. Interaction between classes will be kept to a minimum (including lunch and breaktimes).

  • We are aware of the importance of ventilation and will endeavour to have the best possible ventilation in classrooms whilst also keeping the children warm enough. If your child would like to bring in an extra jumper to ensure they are warm, that is fine.

  • Children will be routinely washing their hands thoroughly throughout the day.

  • We are undertaking a thorough cleaning regime of shared spaces and class bubbles. 

  • Assemblies will be online.

  • Lunches, other than for Reception children, will continue to be eaten in classrooms. Reception children will use the hall.


Illness and Positive Cases


  • If your child or anyone else in your immediate family has a suspected case of Corona virus then please immediately isolate in your home, inform the school ASAP and get tested. If a case is confirmed the school will contact Public Health England and follow guidance about further isolations if needed. No-one with symptoms should be in school until they have had a negative test confirmed. 

  • If we feel that a child is exhibiting symptoms, then they will be sent home immediately and can return to school once a negative test has been obtained.

  • Staff are undertaking 2 lateral flow tests each week, designed to pick up asymptomatic cases in school. Should a member of staff test positive, there could be possible class closures dependent on the result of a PCR test.


Lateral Flow tests for families at home


  • The Government is currently offering lateral flow tests for use at home for families who have children in school.

  • More information can be found here:

  • Through the above link you can find the sites in Oxford that are distributing home lateral flow tests.

  • At the time of writing it is showing a site in Osney Mead as operating but we understand that Oxford Brookes Gipsy Lane campus is also distributing tests. They can additionally be sent in the post.

  • This is of course completely at parents discretion.


We hope that this answers many of your questions about the return to school. The situation is of course ever-changing and we hope to change systems and adapt as advice and experience dictates. It is paramount that we keep everyone as safe as possible but also make sure that we keep the school experience as “normal” as we can for everyone whilst doing so.


Best wishes, 


Lynn Knapp and the Windmill Team