Parents raise concerns after Barton Seagrave school staff 'breach Covid guidelines at gathering'

The school says staff will receive additional training before pupils return

Friday, 21st August 2020, 7:00 am
The Government has urged people to stick to social distancing.

Parents have raised concerns after staff at a primary school 'flagrantly' broke social distancing guidance at an indoor gathering.

Employees at Barton Seagrave Primary School attended the gathering which had almost 20 people present.

At the gathering in mid-July - days before health chiefs warned infection rates were rising in Kettering - people were breaking social distancing guidance. Indoor meetings involving more than two households are also a breach of coronavirus guidelines aimed at halting the spread of the killer virus, which has claimed more than 200 lives at nearby KGH.

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One parent, who did not want to be named, said the rule breaking was flagrant.

They said: "The school has a responsibility to make sure that people are adhering to the rules and guidelines.

"They cannot turn a blind eye to instances of this kind of rule breaking outside of school hours, as the repercussions and ramifications will be felt in school.

"The virus does not take time off outside of work hours and everyone needs to be vigilant."

In a letter sent to parents on July 13, headteacher Marek Krzanicki said the Government guidance on how social distancing needs to be maintained was "very clear".

He assured parents they would be taking a series of measures to promote social distancing at the Belvoir Drive school and that the wellbeing of their children remained a "top priority".

Another parent, who also requested anonymity, said it appeared the school's training hadn't been thorough enough for staff to take the pandemic seriously.

They said: "Anyone within the teaching profession, including support staff, has a duty of care both inside and outside of the school setting to both our children and the community as well as their own families. It's disappointing to see that they're not taking this seriously.

"As parents, our children returning to school in September is filling us with anxiety and this has only heightened it.

"Moving forward, hopefully the result of this will be that the members of staff involved will now fully understand the gravity of the pandemic and will bear this in mind now for the safety of their own families and upon their return to the school, for the safety of the children and other staff members."

When approached for comment, Mr Krzanicki said staff will receive additional training to ensure they fully understand their responsibilities ahead of the school's re-opening on September 3.

He said: "Since the outbreak of the virus we have taken our responsibility very seriously as a school.

"Following a thorough risk assessment, we have worked tirelessly to put in place robust procedures to manage the risk of the virus at our setting.

"Staff have received regular training on all the systems and measures in place and will continue to do so.

"Prior to the children returning, staff will receive additional training to ensure that they fully understand their responsibilities regarding social distancing and other guidelines, both in and outside of school.

"In line with DFE guidance, senior leaders and site staff have worked incredibly hard to prepare the school over the summer holiday to support the full re-opening of school, and we are very much looking forward to welcoming all our children and staff back to school in September."

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