Hundreds of Corby children sent home from school until JANUARY due to staff sickness
The school says that it must prioritise the safety of pupils and staff
A Corby secondary school has closed its doors to pupils in two school years until 2022 because there are so many of its staff off sick.
Parents of Kingswood Secondary Academy received a letter this evening telling them that the school would be shut for years seven and eight from tomorrow (Thursday, December 8) because there are so many staff off sick - and there aren't enough supply teachers available to cover their classes.
Leaders at the Gainsborough Road school said that the decision to shut the school to nearly 400 of its pupils for the next month had been 'difficult'. Pupils had been due to finish for Christmas on December 17.
A letter to parents from headteacher Michelle Newman said: "Unfortunately, as a result of staff shortages due to illnesses, we have made the difficult decision to close year seven and year eight from tomorrow
"The local area is also experiencing a shortage of supply teachers to cover staff who are unwell which sadly means we are unable to welcome pupils back before the Christmas break and will now reopen to year seven and eight when we begin the new term on Friday, January 7, 2022.
"Again, please be reassured that if you are receiving this letter, your child did not come into close proximity with any affected persons within their year group and does not need to self-isolate unless contacted by NHS Track and Trace.
"We appreciate this may be a difficult time however, the health, safety and wellbeing of our pupils, parents, staff and the wider school community must remain our top priority."
The letter went on to reassure parents there would be 'as minimal disruption to learning as possible,' and that as many online lessons as possible would be provided.
Those in receipt of free school meals will be provided with vouchers and those in the school's alternative provision will still be allowed to go into school.
The letter continued: "I appreciate this may cause some concern, but I want to reassure you that, as an academy, we take the health, safety and wellbeing of our pupils, staff and the wider school, community extremely seriously and we are continuing to work closely with Public Health England to help manage both the Academy’s and the wider response to Covid-19, as cases rise across the community.
"We are also working closely with the Department for Education, and the Trust, to ensure the risk of further transmission continues to be minimised as much as possible, and we will remain in contact with our parents and carers to provide regular updates and information.
"I know these are challenging circumstances for our pupils, staff and wider school community and would like to thank you for your ongoing support during this time."
A further statement from academy said: “The health and safety of our pupils, families and staff is our absolute priority, and while we all navigate the challenges of Covid-19, we are continuing to work hard as an Academy to ensure our entire school community is properly supported.
“We take our duty of care extremely seriously and every decision is made with the best interests of our pupils in mind. Due to staff shortages, linked to Covid-19, we have therefore made the difficult decision to transition years 7 and 8 to remote learning until the end of term. Throughout the pandemic, our team of dedicated staff has brilliantly supported our pupils with their remote learning, and has ensured they are in regular contact with pupils and families to check on their education and welfare, which will of course continue during this period.
“We will continue to be in regular contact with parents and carers and will provide further updates and information as it becomes available.”