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COVID-19: OIAM Free School Communications Update & Guidance

28th April 2020. Dear parent/carer,

Despite this strange start to the Summer Term, I wanted to send a message to you and your children, to thank you for your continued support over the past few weeks.

Tuesday 28th April 2020

Dear parent/carer,

Despite this strange start to the Summer Term, I wanted to send a message to you and your children, to thank you for your continued support over the past few weeks.

Now that the Easter break is over, hopefully students are re-establishing the routines of study they developed prior to the holiday. Similarly, the school’s systems which were in place prior to Easter will continue, with teachers setting work, providing marking and feedback and regular calls to check all is well and deal with any issues arising. Free school meal students will also continue to receive a food hamper each week.

If your child encounters any problems accessing work online, please let the member of staff know who is contacting you, and they will endeavour to provide a solution as soon as possible.

We know that many of our students are considering their next steps despite these challenging times. We have attached a letter from Bradford College regarding applications from Year 11 students who wish to apply to attend there from September. Rest assured, if we receive any information from other local Sixth Forms or colleges we will let you know. Owing to the uncertainty surrounding this year’s examination results it is more important than ever that our year 11’s have made more than one application in order to ensure they have as many options as possible moving forward. It would also be appreciated if they could advise Miss Woodcock (Head of Year 11) of any applications they have made and whether they were successful.

We have also provided a parent pack for those of you who are interested in apprenticeships. We are more than happy to discuss further should you wish to discuss this option.

During these challenging times we need to be more vigilant than ever and as such, the Local Authority has alerted us to an incident that I wanted to share with you. A parent has contacted them to report a phone call received over the weekend from a person stating they were calling from Bradford Local Authority. The caller knew the parent’s surname and address. The caller requested information in relation to the parent’s experience of education delivery during COVID-19. The caller went on to request to speak to the child about this and subsequently asked highly inappropriate questions which put the child at risk of harm and caused great distress to the family. Swift action has been taken and it has been reported to the Police who have taken the matter very seriously. Please note that neither the Local Authority nor school would ever call and ask for information in this way and that parents should report any such calls directly to the Police on 101.

Finally, we would like to take this opportunity to wish all those celebrating, Ramadan Mubarak.

Once again, thank you for your support.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees


Tuesday 28th April 2020

Dear parent/carer,

Whether you have already applied to Bradford College or not we hope you find the following information helpful and reassuring. Please click on the link below:

We have also provided a parent pack for those of you who are interested in apprenticeships. We are more than happy to discuss further should you wish to discuss this option.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees


Wednesday 8th April 2020

Dear parent/carer,

Find several useful links to support you and your family during Covid-19. Please take the time to read them:

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees



Tuesday 7th April 2020

Dear students,

I hope this message finds you and your families safe and well.

The past few weeks, involving the closure of the school and the country going into lockdown, have been especially difficult for everybody, and I am sure that you have found that your lives have changed drastically in this short period of time.

You will have often heard of me talk about being part of the One In A Million family, and now, more than ever, I feel that the concepts of community and unity are more important than ever before. You might not be in the building at the moment but that does not make you any less of a One In A Million student, and as such, we are still here for you. You will have been receiving regular update calls from a nominated member of staff, checking on your wellbeing. Please take the opportunity to talk to them about anything you are worried or concerned about, or should you need support in any other aspect of your life, remember that we are here. Similarly, remember that all your teachers, Heads of Year and members of staff in general are here for you. Feel free to contact any of us and we will continue to support you in any way we can.

Ours is a school that talks about values. We talk about the importance of compassion and integrity, and now, more than ever these two values need to be demonstrated, not only by us, but by our entire country. I know that as a OIAM student you will be making decisions based on our values, despite how challenging it may be to operate without the routine of school life or the ability to socialise with your friends and family. Yet, as I stated in my message to your parents: at this time, more than ever, every individual matters. Every individual is valued. Every individual act of kindness counts.

I hope you have managed to access the online provision of lessons and resources your teachers have uploaded to Google Classroom for you. We hope to put even more interactive content up upon your return from the Easter break, to ensure you continue to gain access to the best provision possible, despite the challenging times.

But until then, remember this: We miss you. We care about you. We are looking forward to seeing you again.

I hope you have a relaxing and restful holiday. Take care, stay safe and look after yourselves.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees



Dear parents / carers,

This is without a doubt the strangest end of term message I have ever written, however as I sit and type, I write with a deep-rooted sense of humility, gratitude and pride for all that we have achieved over the past two weeks.

From the moment the government announced on 18th March 2020 that schools would be closing their gates, our staff have been working tirelessly to ensure that we are able to offer a full and effective online provision for your children. Our staff have been calling and checking in with families on a daily basis and we have continued to support local families, providing food and supplies to those who need it. The overriding sense of community and commitment evident as everybody pulls together has been truly humbling. Our staff have shown unwavering dedication in supporting our community, whilst the messages we have been receiving from parents and students alike have been so positive that they continue to spur us on - from the bottom of our hearts, thank you!

We know these are worrying times for everybody, and despite everyone's efforts, there is still much that needs to be done. Our school motto is "Enjoying today, Preparing For Tomorrow" and whilst it is impossible to enjoy these times, preparing effectively as we look to the future will be crucial. At this time, every individual matters, every individual is valued and every individual act of kindness counts. We are all in this fight together, because ultimately we will beat this. Together. As one, united family.

The Children’s Commissioner has published a Children’s Guide to Coronavirus which explains the current situation in an accessible way, and gives advice about how we can all help keep ourselves and others safe. There is a ‘worry buster’ to complete, along with tips about keeping yourself busy and getting creative. Please look at it with your children when you are home together. 

So finally, I want to send my very best wishes to you over this holiday period. Look after yourselves. Look after your families. Have a good rest, take care and above all, stay safe.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees


Monday 6th April 2020

Dear parents/carers,


One In A Million Free School will be open over the Easter break (including Good Friday and Easter Monday) for key worker's children and vulnerable students.


However, the advice remains that if children can stay at home they should, and the school should only be used if there is no other option for childcare. Parents need to telephone school before sending their child in.


The delivery of free school meals will continue over the Easter holiday with deliveries scheduled for Tuesday 7th and Wednesday 15th April.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees

Thursday 2nd April 2020

Dear parents/carers

Re: Coronavirus update – School Closure Safeguarding Arrangements & Child Protection Policy Annex.

From 20th March 2020 parents/carers were asked to keep their children at home, wherever possible, and for schools to remain open only for those children of workers critical to the COVID-19 response - who absolutely need to attend.

Schools and all childcare providers were asked to provide care for a limited number of children - children who are vulnerable, and children whose parents are critical to the COVID-19 response and cannot be safely cared for at home.

This addendum of the OIAMFS Safeguarding, and Child Protection policy contains details of our individual safeguarding arrangements during the period of full or partial school closure. Please click on the link below to read more:

Thursday 2nd April 2020 - School Closure Safeguarding & Child Protection Policy Annex

Yours faithfully

Paddy Gallagher
Vice Principal/ Designated Safeguarding Lead

Monday 23rd March 2020

Dear parents/carers

Re: Coronavirus update – school closure to most students

Following on from my last update, I’m now writing to let you know that we have been instructed to close the school to almost all children from Friday, 20th March 2020, until further notice.

As advised by the government, we will do all we can to stay open for the children of key workers and children with certain needs. In line with the Secretary for Education’s statement over the weekend, please do not send your child to school from Monday 23rd March onwards unless your work is critical to the COVID-19 response and we have agreed that your child is eligible to attend. Your child will not be allowed to stay at school, they will be sent home, if this agreement is not in place.

If your child is attending school, we will open for students between the hours of 8.00am and 2.30pm and they should wear their PE kit. Do not send children earlier than this time as they will not be allowed on site. Students will be expected to leave promptly at 2.30pm.

As always, your child’s education and well-being remain of paramount importance to the school. As such, we will be continuing to support you and your children in the following ways:

  • You will receive daily phone calls from a designated member of staff to check on wellbeing and resolve any issues students are having with school work. Please note that they will ring from a withheld number for GDPR purposes.
  • Work will be set and marked regularly through Google Classroom. Your child has been provided with the pass codes for these platforms, for each subject area, and their subject teachers will mark the work submitted and supply feedback to them.
  • For students who do not have WIFI access, resources, including work books have been supplied or are available from school reception. Please telephone before you come into school so that these can be ready for you.
  • Students who receive free school meals will receive a weekly food pack containing items to ensure their meal provision is continued.

Instructions for Google Classroom are being circulated and will also be available on the school website. (Click here). If you or your child has any queries please alert the member of staff during your daily check in as they should be able to assist.

If you want to get in touch to share any concerns, please do not hesitate to do so via

And remember: if you or your child feels ill and you want to know what to do next, please use NHS 111 online.

Other helpful contact numbers are:

  • Childline - 0800 1111
  • Samaritans - 116 123
  • Help for Children - 0800 169 1601
  • Early Help - 01274 432121
  • NSPCC - 0808 800 5000
  • Barnardos - 01274 513300

Please ensure that your child is safe on and offline whilst they are not attending school, the link below is aimed at parents and students and will answer some questions and provide guidance and advice.

Owing to the ever-changing picture, things may alter as we move forward. We appreciate your continued patience and support during these unprecedented times.

We will continue to keep in touch with any updates as the situation develops.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees

Friday 20th March 2020

Dear parent/carer,

Due to COVID-19 regulations, we have now been instructed to close the school to ALMOST ALL children after today, Friday, 20th March 2020, until further notice.

As advised by the government, we will do all we can to stay open for the children of key workers and children with certain needs.

  • Please do not send your child to school from Monday 23rd March onwards unless we have agreed that your child is eligible to attend.  Your child will not be allowed to stay at school, they will be sent home, if this agreement is not in place.
  • School will open for eligible students between the hours of 8am and 2.30pm. Please do not send children earlier than this time as they will not be allowed on site.  Students will be expected to leave promptly at 2.30pm.
  • For parents/carers whose child/children have to stay at home we will continue to set work using Google Classroom.  Your child has been provided with the pass codes for these platforms, for each subject area and their subject teachers will mark the work submitted and supply feedback to them. For students who do not have wifi access, resources, including work books have been supplied or are available from school reception.

Your child’s learning is important to us and we will continue to help your child to learn. A member of staff will be in touch by telephone daily, however, if you have any concerns please do not hesitate to contact school and we will do our best to help.

If your child usually receives free school meals we will also be in touch with more information about how we will continue to provide this.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees

Thursday 19th March 2020

Dear parent/carer, 

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis One In A Million Free School will be CLOSED tomorrow, Friday 20th March for ALL STUDENTS until further notice. 

For those students who receive free school meals, if your child has not already collected one, packed lunches will be available from school reception at 12 noon.

An email will be sent detailing school arrangements throughout this difficult period once clear guidance is available the government. Further information on provision for vulnerable students and children of keyworks will follow.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees


Wednesday 18th March 2020

Dear parent/carer, 

One In A Million Free School will be partially closed tomorrow (Thursday 18th March) and only students in years 7, 8 & 11 should attend.

For those students in years 9 & 10 who receive free school meals, a packed lunch will be available to collect at 12 noon from school reception.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees

Tuesday 17th March 2020

Dear parent/carer

As we look at plans and preparations for any potential disruption to school regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19), we thought that it would be helpful to explain our plans in order to reassure you that your child’s safety, well-being and education remain our biggest priority.

Firstly, we continue to receive daily updates from the government and we continue to follow their advice. As a school, we have developed contingencies, in line with our emergency plans, should we have to close, or partially close, due to either government instruction or staff absence.

After considering the recent advice issued by the government, we have taken the decision to postpone all none essential contact, including parents’ evenings, offsite trips and sports fixtures for the foreseeable future. This is with immediate effect and we will keep you updated regularly.

In the event of any closure, partial or full, we will place messages on our website, along with updates on our Facebook and Twitter accounts. We will also send messages via our parent text service. Most importantly, we remain open and hope for excellent attendance unless you hear, via one of these methods, to the contrary.

We have also increased significantly the cleaning around school and made provision for additional hand washing/sanitising facilities around the building. Our hand washing areas remain well-stocked and we have spoken with all students about how to wash their hands properly, placing posters in key areas to remind us all of good hygiene. Areas like ICT (keyboards), and all door handles/high contact areas are receiving additional cleaning throughout the day.

Rest assured, we are now preparing work to provide for your children should we have to close the school for any length of time.

We are well prepared for this situation and have already spoken to students about Google Classroom and have instructed them how to access and submit work through this system. Teaching staff will be in contact with students regularly if school is closed and will be available to assist with any issues which arise with study during this time. Marking and feedback will continue to be given for work submitted. We are also working to ensure that printed materials are shared with students who do not have internet access at home.

Our pastoral and leadership team remain committed to supporting the wellbeing of our students and are available should you have any questions or concerns. The team will also be checking in with students regulalry throughout any closure.

I know that this is a very difficult time but I hope that this letter gives you some comfort that we are making the best possible preparations. In the meantime, we will continue to operate a full and normal school day.

Yours faithfully

Stuart Rees

Tuesday 17th March 2020 - Public Health Guidance

To understand what Coronavirus/Covid-19 is? What do I do if you think you are at risk? And how to HELP PREVENT THE SPREAD! Please click on one the pdf translation below:

Friday 13th March 2020 Coronavirus – ‘Delay’ Guidance From Public Health England Update

Dear parents/carers

I am writing to update you on the development of the school’s response to the Coronavirus outbreak, following yesterday’s UK government meetings and latest Public Health England (PHE) advice which you may find helpful.


A team of staff representing teaching, pastoral and operational areas of school meet daily to review the latest government guidance and coordinate the school’s response. Our approach remains in line with advice and guidance from the relevant health authorities, in particular the NHS – specifically Public Health England (PHE) - and where travel may be impacted, we are also taking account of advice from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO).

At the time of writing, the government’s focus has moved to the second phase of ‘Delay’ and in addition to the continued advice for regular and thorough hand-washing, it has now included a requirement for anyone with a new, continuous cough or temperature, however mild the symptoms, to self-isolate for seven days and we are now requesting all the members of our school community to follow this if necessary.

Within the school’s action plan, we are prioritising health and safety and student education over other activities. We especially wish to support our year groups taking public examinations in the summer and ensure the continuity of their teaching and learning.


In light of recent actions taken by other countries to close educational establishments we must be mindful that this remains a possibility in the UK, even though today’s advice is for schools to remain open. Even if not required to close, we may have to consider curtailment of some of our activities and are drawing up contingency plans for all areas of school life, including:

  • Educational continuity – we are putting provision in place for remote learning, subject appropriate for all year groups, and planning alternative arrangements if required for GCSE examinations.
  • Pastoral and medical support – we take seriously the wellbeing of all our students and ask parents to contact school if they have any concerns about how a child may be impacted if unable to come to school. Please reassure your child that they can visit their Head of Year if they have any worries or feel unwell during the school day.

  • Trips, visits, fixtures and events - we appreciate the significant disappointment caused by the postponement or cancellation of activities, and are considering all trips, fixtures and events on a case by case basis. We will take into account the educational merit, the destination, accommodation arrangements and itinerary and of course the Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s advice. We will notify parents at the earliest opportunity of any changes to planned activities.

  • Volunteering - volunteering activities involving elderly people have been suspended as our partners seek to minimise the risk to their residents.

  • Maintenance of the school buildings and facilities, including IT services required to enable remote learning and any necessary deep cleaning. We are keen to ensure that students can resume their studies without further interruption in a safe and fully operational learning environment.


May we ask families to follow government advice if they visit any country named on the government website as a concern, or if any family member does so. In such circumstances, or in light of even a potential threat from such travel or connections, please inform school of this situation as soon as possible. Official travel advice to and from the UK is being regularly updated, so please bear in mind that entry and exit restrictions may change, as well as the advice on self-isolation for different geographical locations which could affect you upon your return to the UK. After the Easter break, we will require all members of the community to self-declare if they have been in an area of particularly high risk – more information will follow about this at the end of this month.


The best way to prevent coronavirus spreading is to wash your hands more than usual, for 20 seconds, using soap and water or a hand sanitiser. Please remind your children to follow these guidelines. We are taking additional steps to support the health and wellbeing of our community, primarily through extra cleaning and widespread provision of hand sanitisers.


Should there be any developments that affect the running of the school we will be in touch with parents as a matter of urgency.

Finally, can I say that I have been very appreciative of how students and families have responded to this difficult situation. I would like thank you all for your support and cooperation in helping us to keep the school a calm and kind place for students and staff alike.

Yours sincerely

Stuart Rees

Tuesday 3rd March 2020 Coronavirus - Preventative Guidance From Public Health England

Dear parent/carer,

I am sure you are aware of the outbreak of novel coronavirus and the subsequent confirmed cases in the UK. At One in A Million Free School we take the health and safety of our pupils and staff very seriously, so we’re sharing guidance from Public Health England on steps you should be taking.

There is currently no cause for concern at the school, but we’ll keep you informed about any developments and ensure we’re keeping the school clean to prevent the spread of any virus.

Prevent the spread of infection

Make sure you and your children follow these general principles to prevent spreading any respiratory virus:

  • Wash your hands often – with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or an alcohol based sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • If you feel unwell, stay at home and don’t attend work or school
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in a bin
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in the home
  • If you’re worried about your symptoms, please call NHS 111 – don’t go directly to your GP or other healthcare environment

If you or your children have returned from a category 1 country or area in past 14 days

This includes:

*Only if you’ve returned on or after 19 February 2020

Contact NHS 111 for advice, and:

If you or your children have returned from a category 2 country or area in last 14 days

This includes:

  • Cambodia
  • China (other than Wuhan city or Hubei province)
  • Hong Kong

> Italy: north* (see:


  • Japan
  • Laos
  • Macau
  • Malaysia
  • Myanmar
  • Singapore
  • South Korea (other than Daegu or Cheongdo)
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam
  • *Only if you’ve returned on or after 19 February 2020

If you or your children are well:

  • You don’t need to avoid contact with other people
  • Your other family members don’t need to take any precautions or make any changes to their own activities

If you become unwell (see below for a list of symptoms):


Call NHS 111 immediately for an assessment (or 999 if you require emergency medical attention).

Symptoms to look out for:-

If you’ve returned from any of the category 1 or 2 areas or countries, look out for the

following symptoms:

  • Cough
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Fever (a temperature of 38 degrees C or higher)

According to other official guidance, while you wait for further advice:

  • Avoid contact with others
  • Stay at home – don’t go to work or school
  • Don’t travel while sick
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when
  • coughing or sneezing, throwing tissues in the bin
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds (or an alcohol based sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available)

If you or your child have any further concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to contact school on 01274 723439.

Yours faithfully

Mr Stuart Rees,