CIPPENHAM School’s doors will not fully reopen to a majority of pupils – but will swap for online learning this week.
In a message to parents, Sonny Sihu, chairman of the Gold Rose MAT, a multi-academy trust which oversees Cippenham School, announced “with regret” the school will be closed for two days from Monday (January 4).
From Wednesday (January 6), the school will open only to children of critical workers and vulnerable children while other children will remain learning online.
This will be reviewed daily, but it is “unlikely” to change in the next week or so, according to Mr Sandhu’s message.
The chairman said the decision was “not taken lightly”, but “had no option” but to close the school for safety reasons as well as a “significant” number of staff following union advice.
Mr Sandhu said: “The high number of staff absences plus the very high rate of infection locally, which is rising, and the ease of transmission of this new variant of the virus leads us to conclude that we cannot, at this moment in time, be confident of ensuring acceptable levels of safety.
“I realise this will be unsettling and inconvenient, but trustees take the safety of our school community seriously and will be working closely with Mrs Willis and her team to ensure children have access to good quality remote learning until we can more confident that a wider opening of the school can take place.”
He added arrangements will be made for free school meals and those eligible will be contacted separately.