Staffing at St George’s school in Broadstairs is now at ‘critical point’ with the head teacher urging parents to keep their children at home to access lessons via remote learning.
Following another positive test of a secondary school canteen staff member the canteen service is suspended for the rest of term.
In a letter to parents and carers head teacher Adam Mirams said: “We have now reached a point where staffing at the school is at a critical point and I need to outline how we are going to get through the rest of this term to Thursday next week.
“You will be aware that this is an ever changing situation and we have managed to keep going up to this point with a huge amount of goodwill from staff. However, a member of staff in the Secondary Canteen has tested positive for Covid 19 and it has left us massively depleted in this area.
“We now find ourselves in a position whereby we cannot provide food through our Secondary Canteen and will have to implement the following:
“We are suspending the Canteen Service at Secondary for the rest of term and would ask that all pupils now bring a packed lunch to school from tomorrow. The Primary Canteen also has staff currently isolating but we are for now going to continue to ensure that we can provide the current service to the primary pupils.
“We will be issuing Free School Meal vouchers to eligible secondary pupils in our normal way so that you can purchase food for your child to bring into school.
“We are remaining open to all pupils who are currently not isolating for the rest of term but we are close to a point where even the resilience of our dedicated staff is being stretched to breaking point.
“This has been the most difficult of eight months and the last few weeks are now beginning to take its toll on staff. We will continue to attempt to provide teaching to all groups remotely on Teams and ensure that we can cover all lessons within the school.
“However, each day is proving to be a monumental effort to simply get the needs of all pupils met. Therefore, I would ask that if your child is able to remain safely at home and access lessons via Teams (or Purple Mash at Primary) then we would ask them to do so across both schools.
“We are aware that this is not always possible and we will remain open to all children that can`t remain safely at home or where childcare is simply not possible. We will remain open as a school until Thursday, December 17 and will attempt to keep Breakfast Club and Extended Day open for as long as we can this Term.
“I am indebted to the continued efforts of all staff and in awe of their dedication as we try and continue to meet the needs of our community. We will just keep going.”
Parents and carers at Newington primary school have also been told that no sanctions will be issued for children not attending classes next week in an effort to prevent the need for isolation over Christmas.