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24 Nov 2020

A Letter From the Head, 24 November

Alex Hems, Head of St George's School for GirlsDear Parents and Guardians

I am writing to give you some updates as we move into the final weeks of term, and also to let you know about how the school would communicate with you in the event of a positive Covid-19 result in our community.

Last day of term

As you will be aware, current restrictions mean that it is not possible or appropriate to hold our normal, end of term events such as Carol Services, plays, concerts and Nativity plays. This has been very disappointing, and we realise how much these events mean to you and to your daughters. We have, however, found various creative solutions, and much ingenuity has gone into ensuring that we are still able to capture some of the spirit of these important moments in the school calendar, and to share them with you, in an entirely safe fashion. We will be in touch in due course with more details of how this will happen. In practical terms this means that the Upper School will not be travelling to St Giles’ on the last day of term, as they usually would. We have therefore made some slight changes to the timings of the last day of term. Lower School will finish, as scheduled, at 12 noon on 18th December. Junior School will finish slightly earlier, at 11.30am, in order to allow us to stagger departures from the site. The end of term for Upper School will be at 12 noon. If your daughter would normally return home on school transport, you will receive a separate email, asking you to confirm whether you would still wish her to use this service on the last day of term. Buses will leave at 12.15pm, and there will be After School Care available for Junior School girls who are waiting for the bus.

Communications in the event of a positive COVID-19 case in school

If we receive notification that a student or member of staff has tested positive for COVID-19 we will of course work closely with Health Protection Scotland to support the trace and protect process. We would notify you of a positive case in school via SchoolPost, and let you know about the school’s response. In the first instance it is possible that we may ask that a particular year group or groups remain at home for the day, while we work with Health Protection Scotland to identify close contacts. In order to reach you as quickly as possible, we would use a combination of text message and SchoolPost, and if your daughter were in an affected year group, you would receive clear information about what to do next. Please could I ask you to check that all your contact details and permissions are up to date on the Parent Portal via iSAMS, to ensure that we are able to reach you if necessary.
It remains the case that the most important steps that we can all take to keep ourselves safe and well are social distancing and good hygiene. Thank you very much for your support for the school in encouraging your daughters to take these messages seriously. Please can I remind you that girls should not attend school if they have symptoms of COVID-19, or if they are awaiting the results of a test.

With my best wishes to you all,

Mrs Alex Hems MA Oxon
Head, St George's School for Girls, Edinburgh

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