‘Living through a pandemic’
Saying goodbye to a class you love is never easy, saying goodbye to your class and not knowing when you will see them again is even harder. On Friday 20th March 2020 our school gates were locked, not for a pleasant Easter break, but as a matter of life and death. Coronavirus is currently threatening our existence, crippling the NHS and rendering many of us isolated in our own homes. Many schools and nurseries were shut in a bid to limit the spread of this fatal disease which has left many of us pining for the times when we used to moan about having to get up early. My school has remained open for a relative few, children of key workers and those children who thrive from the familiarity of routine. At first when our head teacher asked if anyone would like to volunteer to work during the Easter holidays, I selfishly grimaced at the thought of giving up my 2 weeks off to come into school, however as time went on it became apparent that this would be a selfless act I could do in order to be of some assistance during this helpless time.
I cannot praise my head teacher enough for the stability and support he has provided for not only the staff but the families and children who we so dearly miss spending time with. Every day the children who are still in school take part in Joe Wicks P.E lesson in the hall, sit down with a familiar face for breakfast and enjoy the freedom of having picnics outdoors for lunch. These are the children who need supporting the most and it is a pleasure to look after them in this time of need. One of my 3 year old boys speaks confidently about his mummy ‘helping to make those poorly people feel better’. He enjoys role playing as a nurse, walking around with his Drs kit and asking to take my temperature. Social distancing is hard with 3 year olds and sometimes I think a cuddle with a small child is a human right. I hope when he’s old enough to understand, he appreciates the role his mum has played in helping to rewrite history in the face of adversity.
The teachers in my school have gone above and beyond in suggesting ideas to remain connected with families. One teacher has sent a personal postcard to all his students, another is encouraging her students to write a journal of this time to share with their grandchildren when they are older and we have all been encouraged to telephone the families whose children aren’t in school just to have a chat. These are the foundations upon which our school is built upon and I am proud to be a part of it.