7th May 2020

Dear Parents and Carers,

I do hope you and your families are all keeping well. 

The way ahead

No doubt many of you will have heard that over the weekend the government are going to announce the next steps in the process of coming out of lockdown; including how this will impact on schools. Therefore, next week I am likely to have more information to share with you as to what this will mean for our community at Palatine. Thus far, special schools have not been issued with special guidance and you will appreciate that the staff team will need to plan carefully to interpret the guidance for our setting if this continues to be the case.

I take this opportunity to reassure you that we will prioritise the safety and well-being of our community in all our decisions moving forward. As I wrote last week we will do our utmost to make the situation as smooth as possible for you all within the time available to us when we receive the new instructions information from the government.

Free School Meals

For those who access free school meals you will be very aware of the ongoing problems with the system. I know that Kaarina has been in close contact and continues to work tirelessly to help resolve the issues. Please do email Kaarina if she can help you in any other way. 

Online safety

Keeping children safe remains our number one priority at this time.  Although technology can give children access to learning opportunities and socialising, it can still present some risks. Here is some important information and things you can do to help keep your child safe online.

Try not to allow children to have their phones, laptops, or tablets in their bedrooms. A connection to the internet not only gives your child access to adult content, but also allows others to contact your children through video game chats, social media apps, and chat rooms. 

  • Always check your children’s devices, search history, what they are posting, as well as their emails, texts and social media direct messages daily
  • Always have social media accounts turned to private and turn off location tracking. Also, on an iPhone, make sure you set your camera to NEVER allow your child’s location to be seen. To do this go to Settings>Privacy>Location Services (ON) >Camera set to NEVER.
  • Use a parental control app to monitor your children’s devices.

Please use the following links for more information on keeping your children safe online whilst working at home.

https://www.thinkuknow.co.uk/ – for advice from the National Crime Agency to stay safe online

https://www.internetmatters.org/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIktuA5LWK2wIVRYXVCh2afg2aEAAYASAAEgIJ5vD_BwE – for support for parents and carers to keep children safe online

https://www.net-aware.org.uk/ – for support for parents and carers from the NSPCC

Don’t forget to have fun with your children and learn how to play some of their favourite games with them!

This week we have seen some fantastic crafting from our home learners and the staff have really appreciated seeing all the pictures of what they’ve created! Well done everyone!

I would like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you for your ongoing support in this situation. As always, we will work together to navigate our way through the next steps and I do appreciate that you are working with us!

With very best wishes

Catriona

 

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