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Working together, Learning together

Mr Mayer's News

25th February 2021

Dear Parents & Carers

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those of you who have worked so hard with your children with the remote learning. You have been fantastic under extremely difficult circumstances and we know, for many of you, that this hasn’t really been easy at all.  Your efforts have really been appreciated by all the teachers and you really will have made a difference to your child’s home learning experience. 

As we now have a date for all children to return to school (Monday 8th March if you missed it), I thought it would be worth reviewing a few things to make sure that the return goes as smoothly as possible.

Firstly, we are really looking forward to welcoming the children back after this last lockdown. Whilst the teachers and TAs have done a fabulous job to provide remote learning and support for children at home as well as continuing to teach the children of key workers in school, it really isn’t the same as having a class full of children.

The days will run exactly as they did when we returned in September with the same timings:

Foundation, Year 1 and Year 2- start: 8.30am. Finish: 2.50pm

Years 3 and 4- Start: 8.50am. Finish: 3.00pm

Years 5 and 6- Start: 8.40am. Finish: 3.10pm

  • Just as before, family groups will be able to be dropped off at their earliest start time and collected at the latest pick up time. This is to prevent the need for parents to hang around. The class teachers/TAs will be there to look after the children until they are collected.
  • Children must arrive on time but PLEASE do not drop your children off or have them come to school ridiculously early. They won’t be allowed in school until the correct start time as there may not be someone there to look after them.
  • Children should enter and leave their classrooms from the same door as they did before Christmas.
  • Older children who are allowed to come to school and go home on their own may do so providing they follow whatever the current guidelines are for life outside of the school grounds. They must bring a letter to their teacher from their parent giving permission.
  • School uniform should be worn except on PE days or when there is Forest School. The teachers will make sure you know what days these are.
  • Once again, we would ask that your child comes with the smallest bag that they are able to.
  • Children will be taught in their year group bubbles just as before. They will stay in these groups all the time.
  • All children will have their temperatures checked during the day. If it is 37.8 or higher, then we will ask you to collect your child and to take them for a Covid test. This is non-negotiable.
  • You must not send your child into school if they show ANY signs of being poorly. Please do not second guess any symptoms. If your child is in school and they look poorly or begin to look ill, we will call you and ask that they be collected. Many people with Covid have not shown the usual three symptoms and instead have appeared to just a have a cold or feel a bit under the weather. Even with the vaccinations taking place, there is still no guarantee that there won’t be any more cases.
  • It is also important that all our families help us by following the rules. So please…no parties or family gatherings or standing near each other in the playground until we are told that these things are, once again, allowed to happen. We don’t want to send a year group home because of what has been going on outside school.
  • Children’s behaviour is also a key issue. Please remind your children about the importance of behaving appropriately, especially at the moment.
  • We have changed some of our Covid arrangements in school but these won’t affect the children. They have been introduced to reduce the risk of cross-bubble contamination.


  • Children will need a suitable outdoor coat and wellies (which should be in a plastic bag). The wellies will be kept in school so that every opportunity can be taken to go outside.
  • Children will also need a named water-bottle.
  • A suitable healthy snack- no chocolate bars or crisps or anything similar please.
  • A packed lunch unless you are ordering a school lunch in which case you should follow the usual procedure for ordering online. Please remember we are a ‘nut-free’ school, so please check the wrappers of any shop-bought food items to ensure that there are no nuts or traces of nut to ensure the safety of those children with a life-threatening nut allergy.

The Government have said that children returning to school on March 8th is compulsory unless your child has been told to shield officially by your GP. I realise that some of you may still be concerned about the situation and we are happy to talk to anyone who may be feeling anxious about their child returning to school to try and allay any worries you may have.

It is worth remembering that until the last few weeks of December when the new variant of the virus came to town, we had not had a single case of Covid 19.  You should also know that we have just had a review of our risk assessment procedures by the Local Authority Health and Safety officer who was very happy with our systems and procedures and although there have been occasions when we did have to send year groups home, our bubble system meant that it did not spread throughout the school.

Whilst we cannot make ourselves 100% Covid safe, we do make sure that everyone who is here is as safe as possible. The building is well ventilated with doors and windows open and we try to do as much learning as we can outside. Year groups do not mix at all and no teachers or TAs are teaching in more than one bubble. Equipment is not shared between year groups. No teachers/ TAs are allowed to use the staff room. There is regular handwashing and sanitizing throughout the day. Each year group has been assigned specific toilets and specific sinks to use.

As more and more people are vaccinated, the country, Hungerford and the school become safer and safer but whilst we wait for that to happen, we must continue to be vigilant and keep ourselves and other people as safe as possible.   Staff are also taking lateral flow Covid tests twice a week to ensure that they are virus free.

If you need any more information, please do not hesitate to contact the school. We will do our best to answer any questions you may have.

Best wishes

David Mayer


Hungerford PS 01
Hungerford PS 08 (1)


This will be our biggest focus this year and will continue to be for the next few years. At Hungerford Primary School the children will “Learn to read and then read to learn”.  Whatever else they learn, reading will be our focus with the aim that every child leaves us as, at the very least, a functional reader, ready for their secondary school education.

We genuinely cannot do this without your support. I have said this before, but I say a big thank you to those of you who do listen to your children read, read stories to them and talk to them. Your children will do better than those who do not have these things.... by a significant margin.

To those of you who want to support your children but are struggling for one reason or another, then please come and speak to us. It could make all the difference to your child’s future. We won’t judge you but we can help you. If you struggle with reading yourself or don’t know what you should be doing or saying when you sit with your child, then you should talk to your child’s teacher or anyone else in school that you feel comfortable talking to. They will be only too happy to help you.

For those of you who don’t see this as important or don’t see it as your responsibility please think again. Imagine your child as an adult and what their life might be like if they can’t read or write or communicate effectively. Teachers in all their schools will do their best but without backup from home it is as effective as building a house on sand.

Technology Lending Library

One of the things that the Coronavirus lock down has shown us is just how many of our families don’t have access to suitable technology at home for children to use to help them with their learning. We loaned out 28 of our own laptops to families who didn’t have one or something similar at home. We are now hoping to develop a “Technology lending library” to help families and we are very grateful to West Berkshire Council who have generously provided us with 3 brand new laptops to loan out to families who would benefit from having one.

Mr Dominic Boeck visited the school to personally hand over the first of the laptops to two of our children, Stanley and Finley.



I was asked last term by a parent what they should do if they have concerns about a child’s welfare outside school. The answer is simple. If you believe that there is imminent danger to the child, then you should phone the police straight away. If you have any other concerns around neglect or emotional abuse or a child’s attendance or anything else then you should Children’s Services. Their number is 01635 503109. This can be done anonymously.

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