Leyland school staff are praised by Baroness for going extra mile
School staff working through the coronavirus pandemic have received glowing praise from the top.
The parent of youngsters at St Anne's Catholic Primary School was so impressed with the way teachers at the Leyland school have been making sure pupils don't miss out by not being in class, she wrote to the education authority.
Mum Katy Cleece said she was already a fan of the Slater Lane school but added: "Since home schooling began they have gone over and beyond. Daily work has been sent via the learning app, with guidance for us parents.
"The children upload their work which is varied and fun as well as educational and they receive back a personalised voice note or written note or video."
She added: "My daughter even had a video message to wish her a happy birthday. The staff continue to provide a service to key workers children, care for their own kids and go above and beyond for ours.
"My reception child even has a daily story time with his teaching staff! Twice a week are assemblies sent as video clips for the children, with awards given. We have also received weekly calls and texts from pastoral support.
Katy said: "I have been moved to tears several times in the last fortnight because of the care and kindness these teachers and staff have shown at such a tough time, for the benefit of the children and actually the whole family. This school has once again shown it’s so much more than just a (brilliant) education and I really want to highlight this as they deserve it."
Officials there were also moved and sent the Department for Education and the school has now received a letter from from Baroness Berridge of the Vale of Catmose, parliamentary under-secretary of state for the school system .
She told headteacher Elizabeth Darnall; " I want to take the opportunity to thank you and all your staff in school and at the before and after school clubs, for everything you are doing to care for the children in your community."
She added: " I am so impressed by the extraordinary commitment that you and your staff have shown throughout this time, providing teaching and leadership, as well as stability and security for those in your care.
"Thank you for the immense effort. I would like to wish you and your school all the best as we move forward over the next few weeks and months and thank you again for making a difference in your community, and for the children and their parents."
Mrs Darnall said: " This has been a very challenging time for our children, parents and staff and from the very beginning we have focused on providing support and routine. As well as supporting our key workers by keeping school open, we have utilised online learning platforms to provide daily lessons, videos of staff reading aloud, introducing lessons, assemblies etc.
"This platform also enables the children to send us videos, audio clips and photos so staff have been able to communicate personally with them throughout this time. It was a swift learning curve but we managed it!
"We have such a strong and dedicated team of staff and governors which has meant we have been able to support parents and children through regular phone calls, home visits from the doorstep (at a social distance), wellbeing check-ins and all staff have been available via email daily. We have all really missed our school family and are so grateful for the support our families have shown us throughout. "
She said: "The letter from the baroness came as a huge surprise and we are very grateful to our parents, the local authority and the DFE for our work being recognised and valued in this way. Our children mean the world to us and we cannot wait to be our St Anne’s family all together once again."
Staff have also been busy making videos to keep everyone happy.