Plan 3 - Reduced Capacity

Last updated: 6:45pm | 09.08.2020

Apologies, this is very long but very important. I know this plan is not going to please everyone but hopefully you will see that it is the best we can do to make sure everyone is as safe as possible. I cannot 100% guarantee the safety of everyone as there is risk in everything we do on a daily basis. No one can provide a 100% guarantee! However, I can put in place effective procedures and routines that will reduce the risk as much as possible to keep everyone as safe as I possibly can. You may think some procedures and routines are over the top but I’d rather be safe. Some things may need to change and adapt as we move forward but I will keep you updated if they do. Schools across Wales will approach reduced capacity opening differently as all schools are different. There is no right or wrong – it is individual to the school – all schools want to keep everyone safe!

What’s the plan?

  • You will be given a day (Either a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday) for your child to attend school every week until we finish for Summer. Further details regarding September will be provided before we finish for the Summer holidays (as long as further guidance is received from Welsh Government). We have ensured siblings are in school on the same day and grouped children to be with as many friends as possible. You will be provided with your day and times by Monday either by telephone, text or Seesaw. Days and times cannot be changed as we are trying to accommodate many different things.

  • You will be given drop off and collection time and a drop off and collection point for each child. You must drop off and collect at your allocated time. You will also be told where your “waiting” area is. If you are late, you will need to wait in the “waiting” area until there is a gap and it is safe to allow your child into the building. If your child is not attending due to illness etc, you must let us know by 8.30am. You will not be allowed to enter after 9.30am. If our older children are walking home / not being collected – you must let the school office know – telephone 01495 244566 now. Do not park on the hill – park in the car park. If using the bridge from Coed Celyn – STAY LEFT

  • All children will need to bring a packed lunch to school every day. There will be no meals provided at lunch times. Children must bring a full water bottle although please ensure this is clearly labelled. Snacks can also be brought to school for mid-morning although a breakfast cereal bar will be provided to all children from CCBC. All waste will be brought back home. Those eligible for free school meals will be provided with items so a lunch can be prepared at home and brought into school.

  • Clean uniform should be worn where it is possible to do so. I understand that some children may have outgrown their uniform and so if it can’t be worn then clean non uniform can be worn – comfortable clothes. It is essential for clothes and children to be clean and tidy coming to school.

  • When children are in school, it will be used as a “Check in. Catch Up and Prepare”. Children will undertake some learning and work may also be given work to complete at home too. Children will be with their teacher and another adult in a “Bubble” for the whole day. They will not interact with children from any other “bubble”. Teachers have created bubbles to ensure every child is with at least some of their friends. It is impossible to be with all friends. Well-being and friends are the criteria used when creating a bubble. Being in a bubble means children and adults will stay together to work, play, eat snacks and lunch, use the same toilets and sink as the people in our group etc. They will not have contact with other class bubbles. Children may see other bubbles from a distance and can wave / shout etc but there will be no physical contact.

  • Home Learning will continue. Teacher will be fully online on a Friday but will also be present online on a Monday to Thursday although this will not be as much. Children may also be given work / a project to complete for the days they are not in school. Work / Tasks sent home on a contact day will also be followed up on a Friday online. We will be encouraging children to upload photos etc of their work to our online platforms instead of bringing things back and forth to school.

  • You will need to follow the one-way system for drop off and collections. You will need to stand 2m apart and follow the floor markings. Be aware of waiting areas. You will need to be on time. If you are late, contact us. You may need to wait in your allocated waiting area until it is safe to handover your child. You will be directed to a waiting area.

  • In the politest possible way - You will need to be quick. Keep to your time slot. Only enter the site when it is your time. Do not hang around. Don’t gather for a chat outside the gates.

  • HUB: If your child has a Hub place, we will have Hub provision available from 8.30am to 4.00pm every day. We will be receiving a list of children who currently access the Hub from CCBC. All Hub applications are processed by Caerphilly Council and not by the school. Hub places are for children currently accessing Hub provision. If your child accesses our Hub provision, they will join our Hub only. They will not be provided with a day and time slot to join their class bubble. They cannot go from the class bubble to the Hub – it is either Hub full time or join their class bubble and not join the Hub on any other day – it cannot be both. This is in line with WG Guidance so we can fully support “Test, Trace, Protect” principles and reduce any cross contamination between bubbles. Similarly, no other child from any other class can join the Hub – they will need to be collected at their allocated time.

  • We are still waiting for guidance from school transport and the school will be in touch with those that have indicated they still require transport shortly.

Why are we doing it like this?

  • It is a gradual approach – the number of children in each bubble is small and this will ensure we can practice Social Distancing and focus on wellbeing support for each child. We are not rushing into it. We can evaluate how things are working sensibly and safely before increasing contact. It provides flexibility to increase contact time in the future as more information is known. There is clearly room in the plan to increase time in September but also provide effective distant leaning when it is needed. Similarly, we can reduce contact time and increase distant learning if needed. We can review how effective everything works and respond sensibly to whatever may happen in the coming months and any guidance from the Welsh Government.

  • It is clear and simple. You and your child will know your day and time slots for every week. There is no changing rota, split weeks etc. It is simple. You can plan ahead and it is very clear. If needed in the future (From September) we can move to more of a rota basis, increased group sizes and further contact days when procedures and routines are well understood and further guidance is received - our approach is flexible.

  • The maximum number of children in school each day is a third of what it usually would be. A maximum of 8 children will be in classrooms. This allows everyone to have different times for breaks, lunch and sensible drop off and pick up times. This will reduce congestion, enable social distancing and ultimately ensure everyone is safe. Welsh Government guidance states that working in groups of 8 ensures that children of Primary School age can be more flexible with social distancing – although we will be encouraging and reinforcing the 2m distance.

  • We are ensuring siblings are in school on the same day to make life easier for you as this was a big request in the feedback received. This also ensures less journeys are made and there is less risk having contact with others. It will also support track and trace principles.

  • It allows teachers to deliver effective distant learning as well as check in and catch up time for all pupils. Teachers can’t do both at the same time and a manageable approach for children, parents and staff is required. We must not stop our distant learning as we all need to be prepared for whatever may happen in the future. It has been effective for the last 12 weeks. Keeping both going ensures we are all familiar with it and regular use of our distant learning platforms helps it become a great part of the new normal. Teachers will be fully online on a Friday every week. Teachers will be online on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for a limited time but increase their time online on a Friday. We will also safely and sensibly look at developing distant learning with “live” teaching in the future etc - the plan could evolve to include this.

  • Working in “bubbles” can reduce the risk. Children and staff will have no contact with other class “bubbles”. There will be no gatherings or congestion in corridors by moving around the school. Working in “bubbles” would assist with track and trace. For example, if a child or staff member tests positive for COVID-19, the “bubbles” contacts can be easily traced and only those in the affected would need to follow the track and trace guidance.

  • Social distancing can be encouraged and reinforced more sensibly, effectively and most importantly sensitively. The number of children in school is sensible for room sizes. Children, parents and staff will need to socially distance. However, they can interact much more within their “bubble” - this will support with well-being. Our classrooms can accommodate many more children even with social distancing in place and if 2m guidance is reduced in the future then many more children can attend – the plan allows for this.

  • It ensures thorough cleaning can take place before a new class “bubble” arrives the next day e.g. at end of each day enhanced and thorough cleaning will take place through Caerphilly Cleaning. Splitting days into morning and afternoon sessions could possibly increase the risk of cross contamination even though there will be increased cleaning throughout the day. It may also affect track and trace as more children / adults may need to isolate if an incident occurs. it also allows for any deep cleaning on days when no child is in school.

  • It allows for extra contact to be planned for key year groups if it is required. Further contact for key groups can be increased if it is required and if it is safe.

  • The plan allows us to operate as the caring and supportive school that we are as well as ensuring the safety of everyone.

Procedures and Routines in Place

Attendance and Symptoms of COVID-19

  • Under no circumstances should children attend schools if they:

feel unwell and / or

have any of the three identified COVID-19 symptoms

a new continuous cough

a high temperature

loss of taste or smell

or they have tested positive to COVID-19 in the past 14 days live in a household with someone who has symptoms of COVID-19 or has tested positive to COVID-19 in the past 14 days

Pupil Well Being

  • The change in School operation will have an important impact on learners’ physical, mental and emotional and social well-being. We have been sensitive to this and ensured classrooms remain as much as possible like the classrooms they are used to.

  • Staff will positively reinforce behaviours around social distancing and hygiene as opposed to stigmatising mistakes. Likewise, our timetable and layout will ensure that there are appropriate opportunities for breaks and time outdoors.

  • We will be alert to identify and support learners who exhibit signs of distress. All TA’s are Child Mental Health trained and all teachers will provide pastoral care. We have sought information from parents in case bereavement support is required.

Face Masks and PPE

  • In line with Public Health Wales advice children and staff will not wear face masks. The only time PPE will be worn is if a member of staff is in close contact with a pupil e.g. First Aid, symptomatic child. This will may include a face mask, gloves, apron etc. This is for the protection of both the child and member of staff as they may be in close proximity. PPE may also be worn for intimate care e.g. changing a child and again this is for the protection of the child and staff member.


  • We will not insist uniform is worn for these 4 weeks as I appreciate children may have outgrown items etc. If it can be worn - please wear it. However, uniform will be required from September onwards. We will insist children come to school in clean clothes whether uniform or not. Please bring coats and wear appropriate clothes and footwear as we will use the outdoors as much as possible.

Hand Sanitising and Hand Washing

  • There will be a hand sanitising station on entry to premises. As you enter the premises you must use the hand sanitising station.

  • Children and staff will regularly wash their hands. Hands will be washed with soap and running water for at least 20 seconds. Staff will remind children of effective handwashing techniques. Regular handwashing will take place:

on arrival at and when leaving the school.

before and after handling food.

before and after handling objects and equipment that may have been used by others.

where there has been any physical contact.

after blowing their nose, sneezing or coughing.

  • Sanitising stations are also provided around the school so children can sanitise as often as required but this will not replace washing hands. We have plenty of handwashing and sanitising materials in stock. Soap dispensers will be used in all toilets rather than bars of soap.

Breakfast Club, Lunch and Snacks

  • We will be asking for children to be provided with a packed lunch and any snacks / fruit from home. We will not be collecting money and will not provide lunch or a snack in school. For those in receipt of free school meals, the Local Authority will continue to provide food to your home. You will be expected to prepare a packed lunch for your child.

  • Please make sure your child has a plastic bottle filled with water, clearly labelled with their name.

  • If a child forgets his / her lunch arrangements will need to be made to drop off a lunch at school. There will be no facility in school to provide one.

  • There will be no Breakfast Club but the Local Authority will provide a breakfast cereal bar for all pupils on site on a daily basis.

  • Please reinforce with your child not to share their food with any other child.

Social Distancing

  • Children and adults will be working in bubbles. There will be no contact with other bubbles throughout the day. It will also support track and trace principles.

  • Tables, desks, work areas will be spaced 2m apart. Children will be encouraged to stay within areas inside classrooms.

  • There will be social distancing markings visible throughout the school – both inside and out. All adults and children must follow these markings.

  • Staggered lunch times and play times will be in operation. This will allow bubbles to play together in allocated areas safely. A range of social distancing games will be provided.

  • Staggered drop off and collection times to reduce congestion and enable social distancing to be respected.

  • Allocated toilets (cubicles and sinks) for each bubble and cleaning after every use. Soap dispensers in every toilet.

  • One-way systems and stop, check and stand back policy in place for corridors and pathways.

  • A range of social distancing games to play outside will be used and bubbles will have allocated areas / times for using outside space.

Illness and Symptomatic Children/Adults – Isolation Rooms

  • DON’T send your child to school if they are unwell. Usually we would encourage children to attend if they are slightly unwell. Until further notice, do not send your child to school if they are unwell in anyway.

  • If your child becomes unwell during the day, we will contact you in order to collect your child. We will use our Isolation room as an area for him/her to wait until you arrive. Staff will wear PPE to help a child who is symptomatic / unwell.

First Aid

  • Al staff are first aid trained. First aid will be administered by bubble staff – teacher / teaching assistant with appropriate PPE in place e.g. mask and gloves and apron etc. If more serious first aid is required, we have an allocated staff member and allocated first aid room. The staff member will wear appropriate PPE to administer first aid.

  • First Aid and PPE boxes will be in every room and will be restocked daily.

Temperature checks

  • Current advice is that it is not necessary to temperature screen. Parents should check for the signs of a high temperature. Temperature screening will not identify all cases of COVID-19 and the means of checking temperatures may put children and staff at a greater risk of transmission.

  • Staff will be vigilant for changes to children’s temperature and non-touch forehead thermometers are in each classroom and can be used to confirm a high temperature or sign of fever. If necessary, we will do this in a friendly and no intrusive manner and make it as fun as possible.

Bubbles and Break Times

  • When we go back to school children and staff will be in their own “Bubble”. It sounds strange – but it doesn’t mean a real bubble. At school we are going to stay with the same small group of people all through the school day. Children and staff are going to stay together to work, play and eat snacks and lunch. Bubbles will use the same toilets and sink as the people in the bubble. There will be no contact with other bubbles apart from maybe waving or shouting from a distance. It is called a ‘Bubble’ because the children and adults will be protected by not doing things with other groups. Like being inside a Bubble – even though they are not in a real bubble! Everyone in a bubble will do their very best to socially distance although being in a bubble helps support social distancing and will be no more than 8 children in a bubble. It is good to remember that washing hands, staying apart from other ‘bubbles’ and not touching faces are good ways to keep safe. Classes will be split into 4 bubbles. Children will have some friends in their bubble.

  • Break times are staggered and all groups have been allocated areas to play / have their break.

  • Soft toys and items such as bean bags will be stored until a later date to ensure good hygiene and cleanliness.

One-Way System / Waiting Areas

  • Staff will be visible outside to guide parents and ensure social distancing. Staff will be in Hi Vis Jackets. Listen to staff and ensure you remain 2m away from staff members and other adults / children. They are not being rude with any instructions they provide - they are keeping everyone safe. There are allocated areas around the school. They can be used when collecting your child or if you need to wait for a gap (if you were late). Please do not block one ways systems. Use the waiting areas and stand on the floor marking to ensure you socially distance.

Stop, check, stand back policy inside

  • Inside the building there will be no passing in corridors. We will operate a “Stop, check and Stand back” if someone is coming policy. This will allow children to easily use toilets if they need to go quickly. This policy will be reinforced by staff and explained to children. We explored operating a one-way system but it was not a practical solution especially for younger children who may need to use toilets etc.

One Adult Only (Drop off and Collection) and Walking to School

  • There will be a one adult only on the premises rule for drop off and pick-ups. This will speed up the process and reduce congestion. I appreciate some may be dropping off with other children etc – please ensure children stay with you and follow the one way system.

  • Please walk to school whenever it’s possible to reduce any traffic congestion outside school. I do not have any control regarding outside school but I do suggest that everyone KEEPS LEFT when using the bridge and respects social distancing principles.


  • Toilet use will be supervised. Children will sanitise before using the toilet and wash hands after each use. Toilets have been separated with a cubicle and sink allocated to each class bubble. Toilets will be cleaned after use.


  • Cleaning boxes containing a good supply of products will be in all rooms. Staff will be cleaning areas throughout the day especially touch points and any shared toys / games etc

  • Enhanced cleaning routines will be in place at the end of every day through CCBC Cleaning.

  • We will also have cleaning during the day with a cleaner attending in the middle of the day not just after school. This will support the cleaning of all areas.

  • The school has a well-stocked supply of cleaning materials to ensure the school is clean every day.

  • We will be able to arrange deep cleans on days children are not in school and arrange deep cleans for areas affected by anyone testing positive for COVD-19.

  • All doors that can be left open will be pinned open to reduce touch points throughout the school.

Resources / Resource Boxes

  • Each Bubble will have their own resources (Pens, pencils, colours etc) and games boxes (for outside play etc). Each bubble will only use their resources and games – there will be no use by others and all resources and games will be cleaned. Please do not bring in own resources or games etc.

Bags, coats and belongings etc

  • Bags, coats and belongings will be kept inside the bubble. Children will not be using cloakrooms. Everything will be stored inside the bubble / classroom.

  • Children will be provided with all resources – please do not bring in items.

  • All your child needs to bring with them is a lunch bag and a filled water bottle – no other items

Snacks, Water and Milk

  • We will not be selling snacks / fruit. Please ensure children bring in snacks for playtime. We are not selling fruit as this will reduce handling money and reduce the risk of any cross contamination of bubbles.

  • Caerphilly Catering will arrange a delivery of Cereal Bars that can be given to pupils to consume over the morning break. We are not sure whether milk will be provided yet. If it is, it will be delivered to classroom bubbles and children can consume at playtime. There will be no sharing of milk or snacks.

  • You are encouraged to ensure your child brings in a water bottle for water throughout the day. Please ensure it is clearly labelled – many drinks bottles are the same. Children can top up water bottles throughout the day if needed inside their bubble.

  • Please encourage your child not to share any lunch or snack brought into school with anyone else.

Entering the school building

  • No parent will be allowed into the school building. Any queries or concerns will need to be raised through Seesaw or through the school office either by telephoning 01495 244566 . The home learning email will still be operational and will answer any queries –

Signage and Markings

  • There will be clear signs both inside and outside the building. The signs will remind people to keep 2m apart and also remind people to wash hands etc. There will be signs to remind people not to cross in the corridor and where to drop off, collect and wait etc.

  • Floors will have 2m markings and arrows to show you the direction you need to walk and where you should stand to make sure you are 2m away from others.

  • Inside the building signs and floor markings have been used to be as child friendly as possible.

Fire and Lockdown Procedure

  • There will be con change to our fire and lockdown procedures. Children will exit the building in an orderly fashion through their normal exit. Children will line up on the front yard but will line up with more distance between them than normal. There will be no delay with evacuating the building. A fire drill will be undertaken on our return to ensure no issues with new routines.

  • Similarly, our lockdown procedure will remain unchanged. Children will not gather together but use the classroom area at the time of lockdown. If children need to renter school from outside this will be done in an orderly way.

Drop off and Collection Times

  • Drop off is staggered out over 30-45 minutes and collection over 45-60 minutes. Siblings will be exit through the same door as the child being collected first. You will need to bear with us if siblings are leaving together. It may be worth considering waiting and collecting at the allocated time slot. You can drop of siblings together.

  • You will not be allowed to enter the building and go past the second security door at the entrance. If you do speak to the office staff either contact the office by phone on 01495 244566

  • Children cannot come back in If they forget something – we can arrange collection on a Friday or keep it safe until the next contact. Collecting children needs to be speedy and safe.

  • No talking with teachers at drop-off / pick up – Seesaw, Email, Telephone is to be used. Drop off and collection needs to be a speedy process. Teachers will respond to emails, phone calls and Seesaw.

  • Some of our older children may not be collected – let us know now – 01495 244566

  • Bridge and pathways outside school – whilst I cannot manage outside the school I suggest you always STAY LEFT and in single file – e.g. when walking over the bridge STAY LEFT and in single file whatever direction you are walking.

Test, Trace and Protect / Testing / Antibody Testing

  • We will be following the guidance for the testing of teachers and children from Public Health Wales / Welsh Government. If teachers require a test as they meet the criteria, this will be arranged via CCBC.

  • We will follow the guidance from Public Health Wales and Welsh Government for when teachers can receive an antibody test.

  • We will be fully supporting Track and Trace. We will be keeping records of bubble attendance and contacts. If a member of a bubble tests positive for COVID-19, we will be able to track those who have been in contact with the individual easily and then isolate the bubble and any further contacts in line with guidance.

Staffroom and Staff / Public Toilets

  • There will be limited use of the staffroom with limited members of staff at any one time - socially distanced. Breaks and lunch break are planned and staggered. Staff will still be able to make refreshments although only 1 staff member at a time in the preparation area. The area must be cleaned thoroughly after every use. Seats will have signs to indicate where staff can sit. Staff will not use this area for longer than 10 minutes.

  • Strictly one person at a time in the staff toilets. Staff must clean touch points after every use and wash hands thoroughly.

Queuing and Waiting

  • Be prepared to queue and wait. If it is rising bring an umbrella etc.

  • You may need to wait if you are late or if you are early. Please do not enter the premises if you are early – enter at the correct time.

  • You may need to queue around our one-way system – listen to staff who will direct you.

  • Know where collection and drop off points are and know where your waiting / holding area is – see the labelled map.

Preparing your child

  • Social Stories, songs and other resources are available on our school website.

  • ·Photographs of rooms are also available so you can see rooms before you arrive.

  • A Bubble story is also available on our website.

  • Reinforce good behaviour and social distancing with your child.

  • Reassure your child that staff will be there to help and support them during the day and also online. There will be lots of exciting and fun activities and they will be able to see friends in their bubble. We will make it a very nice and enjoyable return.

Summary of Times for each Class (Bubble)

You will be allocated a day and the following time slots for drop off and collection


The following is taken from WG Guidance

It will not be safe for some learners to attend. These categories are set out below. More detail on who falls into the extremely vulnerable and vulnerable categories can be found in our guidance 'Coronavirus (COVID-19) social distancing guidance for everyone in Wales'.

Those showing symptoms

Under no circumstances should learners attend schools if they:

  • feel unwell, have any of the three identified COVID-19 symptoms (a new continuous cough, a high temperature or loss of taste or smell) or they have tested positive to COVID-19 in the past 14 days

  • live in a household with someone who has symptoms of COVID-19 or has tested positive to COVID-19 in the past 14 days.

‘Extremely vulnerable’ or shielding learners

“Shielding” means protecting those people who are extremely vulnerable to the serious complications of coronavirus because they have a particular existing health condition. This includes children, who are extremely vulnerable and at high risk of developing serious illness if they are exposed to coronavirus (COVID-19) because they have a particular serious underlying health condition. These individuals will have received a shielding letter from the Chief Medical Officer. Learners in this category must not be asked to attend schools or settings.

‘Clinically vulnerable’ learners

In the context of COVID-19, clinically vulnerable individuals are at greater than average risk from COVID-19. This category includes those who have a range of chronic health conditions.

If learners do attend, extra care must be taken to ensure vulnerable individuals, and those around them adhere to strict social distancing guidelines. In the case of learners, we would only expect these to attend where parents/carers consent to this.

If in doubt about whether their health condition means they should be shielding, staff, parents and carers should take advice from their GP or hospital doctor.

Living with a shielding or vulnerable person

If a learner lives in a household with someone who is vulnerable or extremely vulnerable, they should only attend a school or setting where they can adhere to social distancing and the learner is able to understand and follow those instructions. This may not be possible for very young children and older children without the capacity to adhere to the instructions on social distancing. In those instances, we do not expect those children to attend and they should be supported to learn at home