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Anyone not sending their Reception or year 1 child back to school yet?

(37 Posts)
33goingon64 Fri 05-Jun-20 21:14:27

I couldn't see an existing thread on this so apologies if I'm repeating. We decided not to send our 4 year old back this week so we're still home schooling him along with his 9 year old brother.

Various reasons, including my belief the lockdown is being eased too quickly and in a confusing way that will no doubt lead to a second wave (IMO); the absence of any argument that such young children should be the first group back; and the fact that he would find it weird being there without his brother and they've been playing really well together at home.

It's impossible to socially distance such young kids - the bubble system only goes so far. What about the adults dropping off/picking up who will tempted to socialise at an unsafe distance? What about families where GPs do school run (they may not have had any physical contact with the DGC during Coronavirus but are now obliged to put themselves at risk)? Why aren't older kids going back first, as they're better able to understand the whole thing and will be affected worse by missing school?

So, I'm asking if anyone else is keeping their DC off for these or other reasons, and what you think will change your minds? Not looking for a pile on of people who disagree with me about what I've written above (I know plenty do from other threads) - just looking to hear from anyone not sending kids back and asking why. Thanks.

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sleepismysuperpower1 Fri 05-Jun-20 21:24:00

similar thread here

33goingon64 Fri 05-Jun-20 21:31:40

Thanks. That's a fairly old one in terms of all that's changing on a pretty much daily basis. Will have a read though!

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33goingon64 Fri 05-Jun-20 21:35:03

I forgot to add that we are very lucky that I can work part time so can do the schooling (though I'm no great teacher!). I know a lot of people need their kids to be in school. So, just underlining that I'm interested to hear from people who are choosing not to send R and Y1 DC back yet.

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wowbutter Fri 05-Jun-20 21:39:54

The indecent sage report said the risk halved from the week of the 15th June. We plan on him possibly going that week, should the death rate lower, which it isn't really currently, it's up and down like a yo-yo.

OliviaPopeRules Fri 05-Jun-20 21:41:17

I wish I could send my Y1 child in but they are only taking reception. I'm happy with the bubble system and think the risks are minimal, the school also have social distancing measures for pick up and drop off. Also I think nothing is going to have substantially changed by September and I would prefer my child to get an education. My childs mental health is being impacted by being off so I have to balance that.
All that said you have assessed the risk differently and are happy to keep your child at home which is also fine.
As an aside - Younger kids are the most vulnerable to abuse (and it having not been identified) and also it is far more detrimental for kids in R and Y1 to get behind as they may never catch up. Your children are lucky you can and do home school them, many vulnerable kids will be getting no education and they are already at a disadvantage because their parent can't or won't (for whatever reason) help with their education outside school.

mrsspooky Fri 05-Jun-20 21:49:08

Im in no rush to go back as we are really enjoying homeschool (R& Yr1) and so will see how it all goes.

33goingon64 Fri 05-Jun-20 21:49:29

Thanks for replying. I struggle with the argument about them never catching up when kids in many other countries don't start school til age 7. But totally get the point about abuse and parents who perhaps can't or won't nurture their kids at home.

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lucymaudmonty Fri 05-Jun-20 21:51:25

I'm the same. Ds1 in y4 and ds2 in y1. I am wfh. It doesn't make sense to me to have one in and one at home and I would worry about ds1 being home without his brother- I already feel he has become a little quiet and withdrawn without seeing his friends and this would be more the case if his brother wasn't around during the day. I also have concerns about it being too soon. But might feel
Differently in a couple of weeks.

whatdidyousee Fri 05-Jun-20 21:54:33

My reception child is going in but then dc has been going to key worker school so it doesn't feel too odd for us. Funny how the people looking after everyone else are expected to send their kids in even when the risk were unknown and higher.

OliviaPopeRules Fri 05-Jun-20 21:57:05

I struggle with the argument about them never catching up when kids in many other countries don't start school til age 7
Yeah but kids in the UK do start at 4/5 so if they miss out they will be behind their peers and as i said it is the kids who don't get help at home, who are possibly already behind, who will lose out the most.

MadgeMak Fri 05-Jun-20 22:01:34

I struggle with the argument about them never catching up when kids in many other countries don't start school til age 7.

Just because they don't start school till age 7 doesn't mean they aren't being schooled, they are still being taught the basics just not in a formal school setting. Young kids in our school system may never catch up because they are missing out on that basic foundation. They may return to school in the next academic year but the teaching they're given will be for that academic year, if they don't have a basic grasp of the early years foundation then they will struggle.

Fruitteatime Fri 05-Jun-20 22:10:34

Op I've been waiting for this thread! Dd 6 is staying at home for now. I am also considering sending her back after the 15th June. I am lucky school have said we should just let them know if we change our minds and that I only work from home one day a week. Unfortunately we are only managing minimal home schooling set by the school as we have toddler ds at home too. I'm a bit worried about the above comment on children never catching up sad Dd is always reading and she does a piece maths work each day. Occasionally we manage to do some R.E. or English. We go to our allotment 2 or 3 times a week and try to have a walk in the woods some days too. It isn't like we do nothing (although some days we watch tv, specifically Wednesday, Friday and Sunday) but it's not as much as she would do at school or everything that is set by school and she spends a lot of time playing with toddler ds.

Dd seems very happy at home, in fact our relationships within the household seem much improved. Ds and dd are having so much fun together and it's a factor in keeping her home. I appreciate that this time has been a gift to us.

I would like her to see her peers and if I can't arrange to meet up for a walk or in a garden of any of them soon I might have to send her back. For the moment I am putting my trust in my decision to keep her off.

YouSetTheTone Sat 06-Jun-20 07:38:21

If I could send my year 3 child back in I would and I’m desperately worried that my due-to-start reception in Sept child will have a very delayed start to schooling.
The current risk to children of catching covid-19 is low (we are in an area with low community transmission at the moment). The risk of getting seriously ill from it is lower still. I am getting increasingly worried about the impact on my 8 year old in terms of his mental health (he’s a generally happy child who is getting in with his home schooling but he hasn’t played with friends for weeks and if I leave the room in the house he gets anxious. He was absolutely flying at school - both socially and educationally and it saddens me so much that it’s all ground to a halt).
The above comment re impact on delays to their education has been outlined in research I’ve read too. I will probably look at personal tutors for both my children if school doesn’t start back full time in Sept (due to be in year 4 and reception).

RaggieDolls Sat 06-Jun-20 08:00:33

I'm really surprised you think the older children would be easier to socially distance. They tend to use public transport / school buses to get to school in massive groups that would undermine any bubble system. Parents have no way of ensuring teenagers come straight home either. Teachers can't 'police' a massive secondary school site to enforce social distancing.

They are also taught by different subject teachers and are all taking different subjects at GCSE. You simply can't form bubbles in secondary as far as I can see. Despite that year 10 and year 12 are back next week where I live on a reduced, part time basis.

Little ones are generally dropped to the school and picked up and taken straight home. Many do not need to use public transport and schools have introduced staggered start and end times. Whatever you think of the effectiveness of the bubble system it is possible to enforce it with current numbers in primary schools.

33goingon64 Sat 06-Jun-20 13:22:39

Interesting points, thanks all.

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Nonnymum Sat 06-Jun-20 13:27:07

struggle with the argument about them never catching up when kids in many other countries don't start school til age 7
I agree and I don't think the children going back are actually doing much learning. Primary school teachers I know say at the moment all they can actually do is child care. The environment at the moment doesn't alow for the way very young children learn. I don't think those who don't go back yet will miss out on anything

timeforawine Sat 06-Jun-20 13:35:27

My nearly 4 year old has gone back to nursery and is very happy. She starts school in September so we want her as ready as possible, she was missing proper learning and her friends.
They have 2 bubbles, one the upstairs rooms and one the downstairs rooms, each bubble has its own garden too.

Ineverdidmind Sat 06-Jun-20 13:37:46

Our school still haven't opened up for any children other than key workers kids. If I could send my yr 1 and yr 6 in I would.

FishOnPillows Sat 06-Jun-20 14:04:10

My DC are Year 2 & Year 4, and are going back next week.
They’re starting a new school though, so a whole new layer of complexity!

Originally they weren’t going to start until September. But we toured the school this week, met the headteacher and everyone, saw how the classrooms were and had the days/environment explained to us - and both DC were really excited about starting! There’s actually only 2-3 kids from each of years R,1, & 6 in anyway. So my DC are going into a key worker bubble, where there’s also a couple of Year 4 boys for DS to start to get to know. Year 2 DD already knows someone from her year.

They were so anxious about starting a new school, but now they’re both very excited!

We could just about keep them at home if we had to - but DP is working more than full-time from home, and I’m only wfh 2 days a week (& out the other 3). We just haven’t got the time to educate the DC properly, and they do spend too much time on tablets/Xbox etc. I think starting them back now is the best thing for them - especially as DP/me are wfh so can facilitate drop-off/pick-up ourselves, with no need for wrap-around care.

Even if they’re just sat there doing the online work, they’ll have the opportunity to meet and socialise with other kids. And fewer kids at school mean they’ll get to know the teachers easier (& vice versa).

Apologies for the length of that - but really it shows that people have so many different scenarios and home situations, there really is no one answer.

notheragain4 Sat 06-Jun-20 14:12:52

My 6 year old went back to school this week. I would suggest properly looking into what your school is doing before making assumptions. In our school it has been very well planned. We have a set time to drop off and pick up (9 and 2 for us) I come across a handful of parents, perfectly possible to socially distance.

I was a bit worried it looked boring with Victorian style desks, but he is loving it, happily going back to school everyday and he didn't even like it that much pre Covid! Doing lots of fun, independent activities. Playing non contact games outside. And it's given us a much needed reprieve which has meant I've been much better able to home school my 9 year old.

Word has gotten out though and lots more parents have decided to send their kids back this week so I hope it's maintainable, head teacher isn't worried as of yet.

So I would be careful making assumptions, it's gone really well in our school and I am so glad my son is getting some schooling in, no it's not as much as he'd be doing in normal times, but it's a heck of a lot more than he was doing at home, for my 6 year old it's the socialisation and discipline of sitting, listening, doing tasks etc that I think is mostly beneficial.

Carlislemumof4 Sat 06-Jun-20 14:14:55

Our school aren't taking the Year 1s back until the end of June but we'd have chosen to keep her off with our other DCs regardless. I've got them in a good home learning routine, we'll keep that going until the end of term.

The infection rate is still high here and school will just be childcare and a rather strange environment for those final three weeks.

I'm worried about September though, Year 1 DD is just turned 7 and has only been in school for eighteen months as we kept her back a year as a summer born. Right decision, she belongs in the school year she's in academically and socially but the longer she's out of school the harder she'll find it to settle back in I think. Elder DD is moving up to Year 6. I feel she needs to be in school as otherwise the move up to secondary next year will be that much harder. There's no way our little school can bring all pupils back unless social distancing is dropped. Part-time (with the possibility my three in primary would be in on different days or same days, different times) would be so disruptive to us as a family.

Trying to prepare for all eventualities. Have just bought new uniform online from M&S but also have parent subscriptions for White Rose Maths and a couple of other sites, have bought a few workbooks, obviously there are lots of free resources too.

The infection rate here remains a real worry, September seems close in that regard.

Greengrapes1357 Sat 06-Jun-20 14:24:52

Our school opens next week and this week the schools sent the numbers out - more children in y6 going back than yr/1. I'm assuming because the change for the younger ones is probably bigger than for the older ones.

33goingon64 Sat 06-Jun-20 14:31:33

Thanks. I'm well aware of what my school is doing (they've been great at communicating) and I'm not making assumptions. I've seen families walking home together not 2m apart then playing together in parks, and I've walked past playground seeing kids playing together as normal (I.e. touching). My point is that in spite of school doing all they can, there are still risks of infection and when we are still the highest death rate in Europe (or the world depending on who you believe), I prefer (and am luckily able) to keep my 4 year old at home.

My DC haven't seen their GM since March and until we're allowed to stay overnight we can't change that. If they'd been in school I'd feel less inclined to visit her in case we pass something to get (or vice versa).

I'm not telling anyone else what they should do, I'm asking others who are keeping their DC at home how they are feeling about it.

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notheragain4 Sat 06-Jun-20 15:04:06

@33goingon64 fair enough, but plenty of people have made assumptions and have been pleasantly surprised at how it has been managed. So regardless of what you are asking I think it's worth being pointed out, though it won't be the same everywhere of course.

I'm not really worried about the infection rate. We are sticking to the rules (so I don't need to feel guilty) but I have no reason to worry if we get it, we are young and healthy it would be irrational for me to be concerned for us, and I'm not hindering my son's education on irrational fears or mistrust. Schools have opened, my kids are going.

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