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Priory Woods School & Arts College

Priory Woods School & Arts College A Special Place to Learn

Coronavirus Information

Friday 9th October 2020

Dear Families,

Just a little catch up now we've made it to Friday of the first week back for everyone after closure.

It has been lovely to have everybody back. Priory 16 students had already been back for a week and had been working hard. Everyone else has come back in and settled down as if they had never been away, which is a huge relief. Please be assured though, we are always on the lookout for any signs that there are any worries we need to address and we do so quickly.

I know it is a worrying time as we watch the news about the local situation but I know I can rely on all of our families to work with us to try our very best to avoid further closures. As always, please remember the three main symptoms (cough, temperature, loss of taste and/or smell). It may be that an infected person has one, two or all of these symptoms. 

It may help to look back on the flowchart I sent out recently to help you decide what to do if your child is displaying symptoms.

If your child has had a test, they must not return to school unless the test was negative. If anyone in the household tests positive, then everyone else has to isolate for 14 days from the onset of the infected person's symptoms or the date of their positive test.

Have a lovely weekend and of course, stay safe.

Kind regards


Friday 25th September 2020 Update

Dear Families,

Just a quick note to keep you updated regarding the closure.

Firstly, I appreciate and do not underestimate what a difficult time this has been for you all. No sooner back then off again was not a scenario any of us had anticipated and it is something nobody wanted. I know that the impact on you as families has been immense and that some of the children and young people have really struggled which is not good at all. If it hadn’t been deemed necessary by colleagues in Health and Public Health and in the local authority, in consultation with me, it would not have happened. The safety of our pupils and staff was the only criteria for the decision. It has been a ‘circuit breaker’ approach, giving time for any other linked infections to be identified and reducing the impact that this could have had not only in school but to you, our families. Whilst we know many of our pupils are robust, many are not and have significant health issues. At our school, we need to protect everyone.

 All in all, we have had three confirmed cases and not all in one area of school.

I have continued to work closely with Health and the LA, including the Transport Department and we have been able to make arrangements for our students who attend Priory 16 to return on Monday 28th Sept. We were able to do this by carefully looking at any potential contacts and carrying out a risk assessment which supported their return. This was because they are in the other building.

For the rest of school, the return date remains Mon Oct 5th. This includes all of those students I spoke to over last weekend asking them to isolate following the news of the third case. I know this is disappointing but having looked at examples of similar schools who have had similar problems, this seems like the most sensible approach.

We have been working hard as a staff team to look at ways to make our bubbles even more secure and have made changes to how we deliver some parts of the curriculum to support this. We are doing everything we can to avoid a repeat of this closure but we need to be mindful of the local and national picture too.

I’d like to thank you too for helping with this by keeping your children at home if they are poorly, just to be on the safe side. As we all know, there are so many bugs and colds that go round schools at the best of times and although we don’t want children to be off every time they have a runny nose, I think you are wise to be cautious, especially given the local and national picture.

On a much more positive note, I had a lovely surprise earlier in the week when Kathleen from Parents for Change contacted school to let us know that the group have been making some sensory bags to go out to our families with children who would benefit from them. We took delivery yesterday and we will get them out to those families as soon as we can. Thanks again for this generous donation. As Kathleen and I said, it’s great to be able to work together to support each other.

In the meantime, please contact school either by phone or email to the office address should you need any help.

Kind regards


Friday 18th September 2020 Update

Dear Parents/Carers
As you will by now be aware school is closed for two weeks due to two positive cases of coronavirus within school. You will have been informed if your child needs to self isolate.

Your child does not need to go for a coronavirus test unless they are displaying any of these three symptoms:

  • A new persistent cough;
  • A high temperature;
  • Loss of taste and/or smell.

If your child does have any of these symptoms please book a test and inform the school by email at:

If you require any further information you can contact the Middlesbrough SEN Single Point of Contact on 01642 201831

We will update you when we have any further information.

Kind Regards