John Stainer

Communication during the Covid-19 school closure

Good morning everyone!

Monday 13th July                                                                                          Follow us on Twitter @johnstainersch1              

Just four and a half school days until the end of the academic year! 

I'm sure if you were outside yesterday you noticed it was flying ant day! These ants, which are much bigger than normal ants won't hurt you, but flying ant day happens every year, and only lasts for a few days. 

I saw a few more of you in Hilly Fields and Nunhead over the weekend, and had some lovely chats. My goodness you have all grown so much! Looking forward to seeing more of you on Friday if you are collecting uniform - please remember to have the right change!

Here is the latest First News for you FIRSTNEWS_July10th

Here is a wonderful competition celebrating the achievements of black people across Britain - you have a lot to choose from! It is open to all ages and doesn't close until September, so you have time to do a really fabulous quality piece! BB COMPETITION

For all new Reception 2020 parents waiting for the Zoom video, here is the link! Reception Zoom video I had to learn new skills of video editing and posting to you tube (thank you lovely Miss Najair for teaching me).  The final class Zoom timetable for the week commencing Monday 13th July is ready (scroll down to view it). Please note there are a small number of timetable changes for the final week due to the early finish on Friday - these classes are highlighted in blue. Please remember to follow the code of conduct - some specific reminders are detailed next to the zoom timetable.

Although this time has been really challenging, we have all had some positive learning too. I know some of you have started doing this task yourselves, but I thought I'd share some more of the staff's Lockdown Learning.  Click on their links, lots more to come over the next few days!  Miss Nwoye   Miss O'Sullivan  Jacqui  Mr_Ali  Mrs_Sue 

A parent kindly shared this information with me about a site you can go to to upload a photo of your child and they will pull it all together into a class photo. I am just passing the information on if you are interested. 

Parents pay to upload the photo teachers are free and it’s all submitted via the website.


Thank you for the uniform orders that are coming in (see further down the page for more details on this) they are being packed up ready for you to collect on the last day of term. It will be so lovely to see some of you then! Please remember to stay socially distanced at all times when onsite, and also - please put the size of the jumpers on the orders! Quite a few orders have had the sizes missing - if it is the wrong size when you get here it isn't a problem, we can change it. 

I completely understand that the Government's announcement about all pupils returning in September (along with the threat of fines if parents refuse) has caused a great deal of anxiety for parents. From discussions with many of you, this is mainly because of the knowledge that with bubbles of 30 children and the Government exemption on social distancing in schools (because with bubbles of 30 it is obviously impossible), children will not be socially distancing at school and then they will be coming home where you may have vulnerable or elderly people. Whilst it appears on the whole children do not get severe symptoms themselves, we do know that they can be asymptomatic carriers of the virus. We share your concerns. We will again be looking at our very detailed risk assessment in the light of the new guidelines, and we will be thinking of all the ways we can mitigate the risks to your families. Please remember, there may well be very legitimate reasons why you might need to keep your child home and it is extremely important you keep talking to us honestly and openly, so we can work together on this. Please note, it is not the school, it is the Local Authority that issue fines for non attendance, and if we have agreed legitimate reason with you, this is very unlikely to happen. However we must record attendance according to the law, so communication is absolutely essential.

None of us knows how things will even look in six weeks time, all we can do is work towards the goal of getting the children all back to school (which is what we want more than anything) so all of our lives can return to some sort of normality! Here our most recent letter updating families on where we are at the moment, and plans for the future.  Parents_Update_29_June


New Uniform for September

We know lots of you will want to buy uniform and we are anticipating the first day back in September will be primarily about organising where everyone needs to go, so we will not be selling uniform that day. Instead, we are going to have a pre-order system from now on, and we will get your pre-orders done over the next three weeks for you to collect on Friday 17th July at a specified time for each year group. If you have children in multiple year groups you can choose which one to come to. The form is here Uniform_Order_Form and we want you to complete one for each child and then email it back to  We will then get your orders packed up and ready for you to collect on the day, but please bring in the correct money so we are not dealing with change. Times for collection (please maintain social distancing and do not loiter in the playground afterwards - it will be a one way flow of traffic!) The times below are for the year your child will be in next year.

Nursery and Reception - 9.00 to 9.30, Year 1 - 9.30 to 10, Year 2 - 10 to 10.30, Year 3 - 10.30 to 11, Year 4 - 11 to 11.30, Year 5 - 11.30 to 12, and Year 6 - 12 to 12.30

Zoom Timetable for week commencing  Monday 13th July 2020

  • The Meeting ID and password will be included within a Zoom activity on Seesaw which will be posted one hour before the meeting.
  • Please ensure that you have read through the full guidelines well in advance of your start time in order to secure your entrance to this virtual meeting.
  • Classes with changes to their regular Zoom time are in BLUE.




Monday 13th July 


Year 2 Green


Monday 13th July


Year 1 Indigo


Tuesday 14th July


Year 2 Blue


Tuesday 14th  July


Year 3 Maroon


Wednesday 15th July


Year 5 Pink


Wednesday 15th July


Reception Red


Wednesday 15th July



Year 3 Navy

Wednesday 15th July 

14:00 - 14:30

Reception Yellow

Thursday  16th July 

10:30- 11:00

Year 4 Lime

Thursday 16th July


Year 1 Turquoise 

Thursday 16th  July


 Year 5 Aqua

Friday 17th July


 Year 4 Violet

Zoom reminder for Parents/Carers

As you know we have a strict Code of Conduct on Zoom and in order for your child to participate in a class zoom it is essential that this code of conduct is followed. Due to a small number of recent incidents, I need to remind you of the following five points from the guidance. It is important that you discuss points 1-4  with your child to ensure that they also understand the rules:

  1. For data protection purposes, children are not allowed to take photos of the zoom or make an external video of the zoom. Please ensure that your child understands that they have not asked anyone for their permission to take this photograph. Any images of this nature must be deleted from your device.
  2. Zooms must take place indoors (not in vehicles or in parks) and children must be seated with a wall behind them to prevent other members of the family from being seen.
  3. No siblings should appear on screen as this is distracting and if they do appear, they will be asked to leave.
  4. Parents and carers, please be aware that not all children (or adults) enjoy speaking on zoom and it is ok for them to participate by listening only. Please do  help them with the controls, but do not put them under any unnecessary pressure to speak if they do not wish to.
  5. Please also be aware that microphones are often unmuted to enable participation, and therefore any conversations that you are having with your children or other members of your household may be heard by the class and their families. Please remember that this zoom is for the children and therefore language must be appropriate at all times, as it would be in the classroom.

The Summer Reading Challenge – The Silly Squad started on Friday 5 June

There is masses of online content and also ebooks and audio books.  This year it will be different, it will be a digital offer. Children can join the challenge on the Reading Agency website. 

The main symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are:
a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you've noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
To protect others, do not go to places like a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital if you have any of these symptoms. Stay at home (self-isolate) and get a test. If you or your children develop symptoms, there are two ways you can get a test, by either travelling to a test centre or having a home test delivered. Click on the link to order or book a test ONLY if you have symptoms

The picture on the right is of someone who we should all look up to!

Marcus Rashford, aged only 22, who is a player for Manchester United, started a campaign to get the Government to continue to pay for the meals for children over the summer holidays for those children who need them because their families are struggling financially.

The Government said no lots of times, but he kept the pressure up until they suddenly changed their minds! Because of his perseverance, about 1.3 million children will not go hungry. Fantastic work Marcus! 

And here is something interesting! Did you know queen bees quack? Apparently they do - you can read more about that here QUEEN BEES

Before the end of term we will make sure you get an end of year report - it will be your Spring report with an extra bit on it to cover the time since we have been in lockdown. I know this time hasn't been easy and you have all missed your friends a lot, but the staff tell me that you have been working really hard and dome some lovely things - well done!

Here is a lovely video that Donna sent - Sesame Street BLM       Thank you everybody for the work you have been doing on #blacklivesmatter  I want to just explain a bit about why saying 'all lives matter' is not supporting the fight against racism, and could hurt people's feelings and make them think you don't care. If someone came up to you and said to you 'Do you love and care about me?' and you replied 'I love and care about everyone', although that may be true, it dismisses the importance of what that person said to you, and they would not feel that you had heard them or did really love them specifically. If someone said to you 'Do you care about the terrible things happening to the trees in the Amazon?' and you said 'I care about all trees', again, it would make the person feel like you don't really care about specifically what was important to them. We are talking and learning  about the injustices that people from the black community are suffering, and how we can all be a part of making things better. So please, if you hear 'all lives matter', it would be really helpful if you could say, yes they do, but the important thing we are focussing on right now is #blacklivesmatter because that is specifically where the change needs to happen.

Children - I'm sure that some of you may have been angry or upset and could well have questions about what happened in America with George Floyd and what has been happening in both the US and the UK following his death. Please talk to us if it is worrying you in any way. 

Please watch this video - it explains really well why racism is still an issue Why Racism Is An Issue For All Of Us

This is a statement from John Stainer school staff about #BlackLivesMatter

John Stainer School has always had a strong focus and commitment to equality and respect for all. In our curriculum, assemblies and expectations, we face and discuss uncomfortable issues and inequalities in the world, because we believe that the only way to make the world a better place is to educate all people out of ignorance and bias and have a zero tolerance of any behaviour that makes anyone else feel unsafe, unequal or unimportant.

We are here for all parents and pupils, regardless of race, sexuality, gender, religion or anything else which makes you, you.

Today, and every other day, all of us at John Stainer School stand as one with our black pupils, staff, parents and the entire BAME community in condemning racism, and commit ourselves to anti-racist actions in our own lives to stand up and address inequality wherever we see it.


Miss Najair has kindly allowed me to share a photo/video of her peaceful protest experience on the BLM march. Miss Najair Black Lives Matter March

Parents- It can sometimes be hard to find good resources to tackle this subject, but a parent has kindly pointed us in the direction of the following resources which we hope you will find more useful than the BBC link which we felt had some messages that fed into the stereotyping. Please click on the links : Jelani Memory - A kids book about racism and Let's talk about Race by Julius Lester

We opened on the 17th June  for Year 6 pupils. We are doing half days Monday to Thursday with the children going home at lunchtime, and bubbles coming in and leaving at different times. Click here to see why we made this choice Rationale

I want to make something quite clear. My decision to keep the school closed for the EYFS, Year 1 and Year 6 is not, as some parents are saying, for a political agenda. It is based on careful risk assessments for both the staff and children, and of our premises. A whole team of properly trained people are involved in the very complex risk assessing, but ultimately I do make the final decision. I have continued to put what is going on, every day, on the front of this website as decisions are made.

Here is a letter from the Chair of the Governing Body for all parents. GB letter to Parents.pdf

Here is the letter for parents and carers about the survey and continued school closure here who could not receive it by email -  Click this link  Survey and closure update  The PM has said he is going to make school compulsory in September, which would mean if you continued to keep your child at home without a doctor's certificate their absence would be unauthorised. I want to reassure you that September is a long way off, much can change over this time and we will keep you up to date with the latest government directives on this page. We understand your anxieties, and promise you we will do everything we can to keep you and your children safe.  We have a responsibility to be cautious about when and how opening to the children will happen.  We have many very serious questions to ask ourselves, and a multitude of things to consider before our school could be opened safely to everyone, but rest assured we are looking at how we can do this so all the problems with opening are ironed out and the risk is reduced to an acceptable level.  Please do not under any circumstances bring your children to school unless we have told you we are ready for them.  

Even though some changes have been made to the lockdown rules, I hope you will all still remember that hand-washing and social distancing are both extremely important especially if you are seeing anyone from another household. You can't touch them, you MUST keep two metres away. I know this is strange, and it feels weird, but the most important thing we can do is keep ourselves and those we love safe, healthy and well. 

For anyone who wants to know about the staffing for next year, click here!  NEW CLASSES 20/21

I hope you all enjoyed the video we sent. There was a little glitch in the one we sent out as it started in the middle,  so unless you rewound it to the start, you might have missed some of the staff, so here it is again. We made it to remind you not to worry, and that 'every little thing is going to be alright'!  


Can you please click on the link below to nominate our school - we might win £5000 worth of books! Its super quick to do. 

To counter all this negativity, I have a lovely treat for you, an amazing story! Please listen and share it with your friends! Click this link - The Great Realisation

Parents, this is a ten minute video from the Association of Online Safety specialists, it provides a good round up of all the main online safety issues to consider. It advises parents to be more vigilant during this time of increased online activity and  offers some good signposts to keep children safe online. Parents Online Safety FilmThe Safeguarding Training Centre have also  created an Online Safety Hub for Parents to access interactive guidance on setting up parental controls on their child’s devices, as well as guidance on apps like TikTok, YouTube and Instagram and more.

Summer Term: Teachers will be in touch with you every weekday via Seesaw with three daily lessons. To find our more about our term-time programme of lessons or to find additional resources visit our remote learning page  and here is a link to a proposed timetable that might be good to help get yourselves into a routine! Learn at home timetable You can adapt it if you need to. You can also follow our school twitter account @johnstainersch1 - we are regularly retweeting lots of great activities here too - don't forget you can tag us in on anything that you find that might be of interest to teachers, parents and carers.


Parents and carers have found out if they have been offered a Reception place at our school for September - so if this is why you are reading this  - congratulations and welcome! This year we had 283 applications, 27 siblings, and we have 38 on the waiting list! Our Pupil Welfare Manager Sarah Harrison has asked if you could please complete and e-mail the admission form - CLICK HERE  and then email it back to her at along with a copy of your child's long birth certificate and a proof of address eg council tax bill. Here are two other important documents for you to read   Privacy_Notice  and   Data_Protection. We look forward to welcoming you to the school in September!

We are still open every day for the children of critical workers.  We need confirmation from your employer about your critical worker status and what times you need to work, and for you to complete the form at the bottom of this page. We will ask you to take the temperature of your child when they arrive, so we can note it down, and as they leave. Remember, this is emergency childcare only to be used as a last resort when there is nobody else at home or available to look after your children. They are safer at home. With less children, there is also less risk to the staff coming in to do this supervision. Once again, I would like to say a very grateful thanks all the staff who have done this supervision, especially over the Easter holiday weeks and public holidays.         

Keep safe and well, and look after each other. Have a good week

Sue Harte (and Charlie)

 For critical workers please read the  Critical_Care_Place_Rationale. There is an application form as well if you qualify, but if you can, the safest thing for everyone is actually if you keep your child at home. Restricting movement is the best fight against this awful disease for everyone. But we ARE supporting those critical workers who need to get to work and have no alternative care, so even if it is for in a few weeks or ahead of time, please complete the application and email   Critical_Carer_Application Children who are confirmed and coming can wear their own clothes, no uniform necessary - this is not an education alternative, this is emergency childcare!

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