Dear Parents, Families and Carers,

I trust this finds families as well and as safe as possible in the current circumstances.

I wish to inform parents that for the week beginning 11th January only we will operate as we are currently, and then look to increase our pupil and staff population (be that on our main site or at each of our satellites) from the week beginning the 18th January onwards. I am moving forward in this manner with the full support of Leigh Academies Trust.

With regards to the week beginning Monday 11th, I have factored in the following:

  • Keeping the health and safety of staff and pupils paramount, especially in relation to the space available versus the amount of pupils and adults who are on site, as with all schools, Milestone has the same capacity to act as a “vector of transmission, causing the virus to spread between households”
  • Taking note of the very high levels of positive Covid cases across the Gravesham and Dartford areas – yesterday over 1,250 per 100,000 population currently with both double the national average and twelfth highest in the whole of the United Kingdom
  • Taking note of the strain that is currently occurring on local NHS services, especially our local hospital, and doing our best not to add to them
  • Taking time to work with our Union colleagues to ensure we reach a point where members can feel that I and we are operating with their best interests and their health and safety in mind
  • Knowing that next week we will be able to start mass testing initially for the staff and then move, once we become familiar with the procedures, to where we feel it is safe to do tests on and with our secondary pupils where consent has been given.

To aid our planning for the week beginning Monday 18th January each parent/family will receive a questionnaire tomorrow that we would ask is filled out by 9:30am on Monday 11th January. We will deliberately have questions that can be answered in a way that will help families to inform us of urgently needed places during the week commencing Monday 11th January, because parents, carers or families feel that being in school would be a safer option for that pupil.

As ever, thank you for your ongoing support and understanding as we move forwards into 2021.

Yours sincerely,

Nigel Jones