Willow Tree Primary School

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    Weekly Update (15/01/21)

    15 January 2021 (by Chloe Topping (chloetopping))

    Click the date to find out our school news for this week.

    Friday 15th January 2021

    Weekly Update

    Dear Parents & Carers,

    I wish to take this opportunity as always to say a huge THANK YOU for all your support during the last two weeks as we moved to online remote learning.  It has been a challenge to turn the school around so quickly, but I feel we are slowly getting there now.

    Weekly Contact

    I have asked my teachers to keep in touch with you over the lockdown by a weekly phone call.  This is a supportive phone call to see whether there is anything we can do to support you or answer any questions you may have.  If you would prefer an email rather than a phone call, please let you teacher know via their email which you will find on Jotter Learn. 


    Could I ask that if you need to let school know that your child/ren are not going to be in that you ring school and leave a message?  Our phones have the facility for you to leave a message.  I would ask that you do not use our social media to let us know this.  Thank you for your cooperation.

    Free School Vouchers

    As you’ll be aware, if you claim free school meals for your child, we have been offering the opportunity to come to school and collect a lunch whilst we waited to hear what the Local Authority / Government were deciding how they wanted this to work during the current lockdown.

    We have now had confirmation that our local authority will be issuing the vouchers for us and we will be sending them out for the previous two weeks and a separate voucher for the next two weeks.  This means you should receive vouchers which cover January.  You will then receive a new voucher in early February for the final two weeks of this half term.

    Currently, the Government have said that we are not to provide vouchers to cover the February half term.  This is an evolving situation and it is currently being discussed on the news.  If I receive any further updates on this, I will let you know as soon as possible.

    Free School Meals vs Universal Free School Meals

    Free School Meals is different from Universal free School meals.  When you claim Free School Meals, the school receives money called Pupil Premium which we use to support all children who claim Free School Meals.  This is because children from disadvantaged backgrounds find it more difficult to reach the expected levels in school.

    Universal Free School Meals are a meal provided to children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 paid for by the Government.  This is not covered under the voucher scheme as this only applies to Free School Meals (Pupil Premium).

    If you feel that you may qualify for Pupil Premium, please contact the school office who can provide you with details about how you may submit a claim for this.

    Risk Assessment

    I will be placing on the main school website our current Risk Assessment for school.  This is in addition to other risk assessments that we have had in place since the pandemic began last year.  If you have any questions in relation to the risk assessment, please contact me via school.

    School Reminders

    Could I just ask that you stick to the timings for your child’s class and if you are going to be late, you let school know?  Also, there should only be 1 adult collecting/dropping off your child/ren.  Thank you as always for your cooperation in this.

    Letter from St Helens Directors

    Earlier this week, I placed a letter from Director of Public Health and Director of Children’s Services on our school website.  The main message is infection rates in our region are climbing very quickly and to only use a school place when required. 

    If you have been allocated a school place, you will not lose it by following this guidance.  It will also support our NHS by bringing down the rates quicker and reducing pressure which I personally is extremely high at the minute.

    I wish you all the best for the weekend and stay safe.

    With very best wishes,

    Mr Perkins