I am writing to update you on the plans for the Nursery children in the phased reopening of Chestnuts. Nursery children are included in the year groups identified in the government guidance for the partial reopening of schools. We have thought very carefully about how we can provide the highest quality provision possible for our nursery children. As you may have seen in the latest update on the website, we have decided to open the school to one year group at a time, starting with the oldest children. This allows us to carefully manage the logistics of reopening and allows us to do it in the safest possible way. We have decided to open Early Years (both Nursery and Reception) in the third phase of reopening which is provisionally planned for the 22nd of June. We believe this is the best balance we can achieve between opening with a careful, staged approach and giving the children enough time back in school to make the return meaningful and worthwhile.
In order to keep numbers in Nursery manageable, we have decided that we will only open the Nursery this term to the children who are moving on to Reception in September 2020. We think it is really important for the children about to make this transition to have the opportunity to see their teachers, friends and nursery again before the end of the school year. Following government guidance, the children would be allocated to one of two 'bubbles' (Monday and Tuesday or Thursday and Friday) and the nursery would be deep cleaned in between on a Wednesday. The nursery day would be slightly shorter than usual (9.15am-2:45pm) to avoid drop off and pickup time coinciding with other classes. Having the two separate groups or 'bubbles' will ensure that no more than 15 children attend any one session. Within the session the children would not be expected to follow social distancing rules and the nursery would operate as normally as possible. Staff will be allocated to one of the two 'bubbles' so that there is no mixing between the groups.
Our aim in reopening for our nursery children is to provide a safe, happy, familiar place with time with friends and teachers. Although we cannot provide the usual transition visits and activities, we will also be helping the children to reflect upon their time in Nursery and start thinking about their transition to school.
Unfortunately, the numbers we are able to provide for, mean that we will not be able to welcome back the children who are not due to start in Reception in September 2020. However, we very much look forward to welcoming them back into the nursery in September to continue their journey with us.
We will continue to provide home learning activities and support on Tapestry for home learning throughout the whole of this term.
We completely understand that each family is in a different circumstance and respect whatever decision you feel is right for your child and family. I know the Nursery staff are in regular contact with you and will be happy to discuss this further when you next speak should you wish to.