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Latest News and Updates

May 2020


    Published 29/05/20

    Dear Parents and Carers,

    We continue to work towards opening to more pupils from the 8th June, welcoming pupils in Reception, Y1 and Y6 back to school. From 1st June we will continue to provide childcare for the children of key workers.

    If you have children who will be returning to school from the 8th, please read the 3 documents at the bottom of this blog very carefully:

    It is very important that you read and understand the attached documents, so please contact us on if you have any questions - especially if you think we have missed something altogether from the guidance attached.

    We will send out a survey to parents in Reception, Y1 and Y6 early next week and would ask that you let us know definitively if you intend to send your children back to school from the 8th.

    Have a wonderful weekend,

    Mr Cresswell

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  • 16th Memorial Walk

    Published 25/05/20

     16th Memorial Walk......... AROUND KEYWORTH in aid of Cancer Research on

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    Published 22/05/20

    Pease see our newsletter and pupil letter below.

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  • Update for parents, 22 may

    Published 21/05/20


    We have received information in school this morning asking us to push back our date for opening to more pupils to the 8th June at the earliest.

    This means: 

    • 1st-5th June: Staff will be in school for training and preparation
    • Monday 8th June: School will open to Y6 pupils
    • Tuesday 9th June: School will open to Y6 and Y1 pupils
    • Thursday 11th June: School will open to Y6, Y1 and Reception pupils

    A letter explaining why we been asked to make this change can be found here .

    We have already received a few questions from parents following yesterday's blog - we will provide a FAQ blog early next week to respond to these questions.

    Please see the attached leaflet for more information - it has been updated in line with the information above.

    Please note - school will remain open to the children of keyworkers every day, including Wednesdays, from 1st June. Any changes to uniform and routines will not be implemented until wb 8th June.

    Kind regards,


    Dear Parents,

    I last wrote to you on the 13th May about the Government’s ambition to open schools to more children from June 1st.  You have probably seen a little coverage about their plan in the media! It is important to keep in mind that the Government have stated that this is a conditional plan and as such its implementation will be dependent on many factors around the spread and containment of the coronavirus.

    Since the 13th May we have been reviewing and digesting the government guidance that arrives in our inbox on a daily basis. The guidance is extensive, but in summary tells us that adhering to the following principles will mean a return to school is safe:

    • avoiding contact with anyone with symptoms
    • frequent hand cleaning and good respiratory hygiene practices
    • regular cleaning of settings
    • minimising contact and mixing

    Our planning has focused heavily on these 4 principles to ensure the risk of contracting Covid-19 for children and adults is minimised. Ensuring we follow these principles in school, as well as a continued expectation to support home learning for pupils not in school, has meant completely reorganising all aspects of school life including timetables, behaviour codes, curriculum planning and delivery, marking & feedback procedures, the physical layout of the school, staff deployment, rotas, cleaning and hygiene procedures, H&S expectations and much more. These changes have necessitated writing a completely new staff handbook to cover all aspects of the school day. This has been a complex task for us – the risk assessments alone reference 9 different government or professional association planning guides.

    Although we are still working positively towards opening to more pupils, the complexity of the task does mean that school governors have approved a plan to open in a measured, staggered way that allows for staff training and preparation. In practice, this means:

    • 1st-5th June: Staff will be in school for training and preparation
    • 8th June: School will open to Y6 pupils
    • 9th June: School will open to Y6 and Y1 pupils
    • 11th June: School will open to Y6, Y1 and Reception pupils
    • Please note, school will be closed to the groups above every Wednesday to allow for cleaning and for planning and preparation of resources for pupils in school and at home.

    Keyworker parents should continue to book childcare for their children using the booking link sent out each week. If you have questions about this, please email us. Please note, school will remain open to the children of keyworkers every day, including Wednesdays, from 1st June.

    This staggered start should give parents confidence that all staff will understand and can follow the new guidelines and procedures they will need to use on a day to day basis.

    Children coming to school  will continue to follow a curriculum very similar to the one we have been sending home over recent weeks, based on a weekly learning mat. The children of keyworkers in school will also be working through their learning mats  and can continue at home if they are attending part time.

    Learning mats will be sent home for children in all year groups on a weekly basis. However, the parents of children learning at home must expect less communication from teachers – splitting each returning class into smaller ‘bubbles’ means all staff will be in class teaching every day.

    Please see the attached leaflet for more information about our plans to open to more groups of children. However, please contact us using if you have any questions ahead of your child coming to school in line with the timetable above. We will contact the parents of children in R, Y1 and Y6 next week asking them to let us know if they intend to send their children back to school.

    We have received many supportive messages in recent weeks – these have meant a lot to staff and have been hugely appreciated.

    Do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.

    Kind regards,

    Peter Cresswell


    Examples of new layouts - note individual  trays for pupils to avoid sharing resources.

    New behaviour code



    Guidance posters for staff

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  • Weekly Keydale Blog #8

    Published 15/05/20
    It's been another busy week of lockdown and we hope you are all still safe and well. This week's pupil letter is dedicated to all our pupils and parents (see below) and we have also attached a picture book to this post for use with children w
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  • Update for parents, 13th May

    Published 13/05/20

    Dear Parents and Carers,

    I am sure that you, like me, have spent much time this week thinking about the latest Government guidelines on the possible  reopening of schools for pupils in certain year groups from 1st June.

    It is important to keep in mind that the Government have stated that this is a conditional plan and as such its implementation will be dependent on many factors around the spread and containment of the coronavirus. It seems that there is general scientific consensus that children are not suffering from the virus in the way older people are, but there doesn’t appear to be any consensus on whether or not children spread the virus.

    However, we are currently planning and considering the logistics of offering provision for:

    1. Children in Year 6, Year 1, Reception
    2. Children identified by school as vulnerable or the children of key workers as set out by Government (These children have already been accessing childcare at Crossdale since March)

    One of the difficulties in planning is knowing exactly how many pupils we will be catering for. The Government are encouraging all eligible children to attend (where there are no shielding concerns in their households) so that they can gain the educational and well-being benefits of attending. However, we are aware that some parents may be unsure about sending their children back to school. To support you in making a decision, the following guidance from the Department for Education may be useful:

    • Children should be in groups of 15 or fewer children in a classroom led by a teacher or teaching assistant. Each of these groups would be in its own ‘bubble’ through the school day
    • Children should not be able to mix with children who are not in their bubble. This may require staggered assemblies, playtimes and lunchtimes.
    • Staggered starts and ends to enable safe drop offs and collections are advisable, meaning not all children will start at 9am and end the day at 3.30pm.
    • Any provision may be limited to allow for cleaning and hygiene, meaning the timetable will need to be reduced.
    • There is no obligation to initially provide wrap-around care – not offering wrap-around care will help limit children’s contact to their bubble. (We will review this for key workers).
    • Schools have the option to phase some year groups back on a priority basis, meaning all year groups (R, Y1 and Y6) may not start back to school on the same date.
    • Brothers and sisters of Reception, Year1 and Year 6 children will only be admitted if they meet the vulnerable / key worker classification.
    • Only 1 parent will be allowed to pick up or drop off their children.
    • If there is a confirmed case of Coronavirus, all children in that bubble will be told to self-isolate for 14 days.
    • Schools should focus on handwashing, good hygiene measures and effective cleaning routines

    You can find the full Government guidance for parents and carers by clicking here.

    I want to stress that we will be doing our very best to ensure that social distancing between staff and children, and between the children themselves, is adhered to. However, we are dealing with children and as you well know, children are inherently unpredictable. There is a crucial piece of information in the guidelines sent to schools by the Government:

    • We know that, unlike older children and adults, early years and primary age children cannot be expected to remain 2 metres apart from each other and staff. In deciding to bring more children back to early years and schools, we are taking this into account.

    In terms of curriculum content and teaching, in many ways this would be a continuation of the materials we have been sending home, within an overarching aim of ensuring the emotional and social health of the children after a long period away from school. There would be English and maths work for the mornings and additional activities for the afternoons. Continuing with a similar curriculum will mean we can still offer home learning to children not attending school – children at home and school will have access to almost the same curriculum.

    The decision on whether or not you choose to send your children back lies ultimately with you - hopefully the information in this letter will be useful in this regard. Although we will continue to encourage our vulnerable children to attend school, there will be no pressure placed on you by school. Furthermore, the Government has said parents will not be fined for non-attendance at this time.

    We will continue to plan and will be in touch over the coming days to share more information with you, as it emerges, and also to ask your views on sending your children back to school.

    Our priority as a school is always the safety of the children and the staff, first and foremost in everything we do. All we can do as a school at this time is implement fully the guidelines the Government have given us, give you the same information we have been given and, if your children do return, promise to look after them as carefully as we would our own.

    Best wishes,

    Peter Cresswell






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  • Update for Parents and Carers

    Published 12/05/20

    Dear Parents and Carers,

    The government published very detailed guidance last night regarding the potential reopening of schools for pupils in  Reception, Y1 and Y6 from 1st June. We are currently working in school, and with other schools in Equals Trust, to review that guidance and formulate a plan - we are hoping to share our initial plans with you later this week or early next week. In the meantime, you might like to read the guidance that was also published for parents and carers by the DfE: CLICK HERE 

    I also attach a letter from the CEO and Chair of Equals Trust.

    I hope you and you families are well – stay safe.

    Best wishes,

    Mr Cresswell

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  • Latest Government Announcement 10/5/20

    Published 10/05/20

    Dear Parents and Carers,

    Following Boris Johnson's announcement about the potential for pupils in R, Y1 and Y6 to return to school from 1st June, I wanted to let you know that schools have not yet been sent further guidance regarding this plan. As soon as more details come through from the Department for Education (which we expect early this week), we will firm up our arrangements and contact you as quickly as possible.

    In the meantime, it is worth noting that Mr Johnson said he hoped to see R, Y1 and Y6 in school from the 1st June at the earliest, […] if the UK’s lockdown status was lowered by then. He also said this plan all depends on a series of big ifs.

    Stay safe and well. Best wishes,

    Mr Cresswell

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  • Well-being and Nurture

    Published 08/05/20

    Mrs Neale is Crossdale’s Emotional Literacy Support assistant (ELSA) and  normally works with children to help them manage their emotions. Since Crossdale was closed to most children, Mrs Neale has been preparing and distributing  a weekly ‘nurture’ newsletter to help children focus on their well-being - we’ve attached a copy below for you to look at. If you would like to receive a copy each week, please email Mrs Neale directly using Mrs Neale will also do her best to answer any questions you might have about supporting your child through these unprecedented times.


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    Published 07/05/20

    Our weekly update for you, including a letter for the children and our fortnightly newsletter. Please read the letter to your child / children so that they know we are thinking of them!

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  • Weekly Keydale Blog #6

    Published 01/05/20
    I’m not sure about you but this week seems to have been the hardest week of lockdown so far! We are all desperately missing the children, parents and the general buzz that usually makes school such a special place to work. Thank you so much
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