Trying to capture the events of the last few months in one article seems an almost impossible task. There have been so many changes and so many new challenges that it is really difficult to capture and report on everything. There is one story that shines throughout though. It is the story of the team.
It seems like an age ago when we received notification that we had to shut our school to most of our children due to the outbreak of Corona Virus. This phase was difficult. We worked hard to maintain an air of calmness and consistency whilst at the same time minimising a sense of sadness. Sadness mostly for our Year 6 children whose time at EBPS seemed to have been cut short.
The next phase has only just passed. Being asked to reopen our doors to more children seemed on the surface to be a simple task. It was anything but. However, the sense of team again, shone through. Meticulous planning and drawing upon our knowledge of the children meant we were able reopen to more children from 3rd June. The feedback from governors, staff, parents and the children themselves has been fantastic. It has been this feedback that has kept us going and I want to say a huge thank you to everyone connected with our school for your support.
Just yesterday we received confirmation that the government has decided not to pursue its ambition to open primary schools to all children for a month before the end of the summer term. Again, the team at EBPS are working on a response to this.
My main focus is clear. How do we as a school address the significant implications of the prolonged closure? What is obvious is that this will have long term effect and the measures to counter this will have to be implemented over the longer period. We are already working on a package of support for our families for the rest of the summer term and into the summer holidays too. Disadvantaged children are of particular concern and we are looking at creative ways in which we can support these families in cooperation with support services and external providers.
At EBPS we often talk about our core values (self belief, honesty, respect, excellence and kindness). All of these have been demonstrated continually since the 20th March right across our school. It has been these core values that have helped us to meet the challenges we have faced and it is the strong sense of team, fuelled by genuine community support that has enabled our amazing school to meet the numerous demands we have faced together.
There is a proverb which seems appropriate: 'A smooth sea never made a skilled mariner'. We have learned so much about each other over this period. I am sure there are things that we could have done differently. I remain immensely proud of our team at EBPS and in particular I am hugely proud of our children whose smiles and good wishes make everything worthwhile. I, like you, am certainly looking forward to calmer seas ahead!
Very best wishes.