COVID-19 Updates

We remain committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of all those in the Leweston community. Our first priority is to look after, protect and support those in our care including our students, staff and visitors and provide a Covid-safe environment for all. Appropriate Government measures will be adopted so that everyone onsite can live and work securely and safely.

On this page are links to key documents, there is also a list of Frequently Asked Questions.   If you have any further queries please do not hesitate to contact the school.

This is a dynamic page and will be updated as guidance changes.

Leweston will be welcoming students back on site from Sunday 7 March when boarders return. Further information about the March Return to School for the Prep and for the Senior School can be found by clicking the relevant link or reviewing the documents in Related Downloads.

Staff remain contactable on email and you can still telephone the Senior School on 01963 210691 or the Prep on 01963 210790.

COVID-19 FAQs

HOW IS LEWESTON ABLE TO MANAGE COVID 19?

  • Leweston is set in 46 acres of parkland in the county of Dorset. Our rural location combined with a low local population density and absence of commuter routes supports with social distancing.
  • The size of our campus combined with a relatively small number of pupils allows us to maximise individual space.
  • Leweston has a team of dedicated boarding staff, its own Health Centre staffed by two registered nurses and support from the Apples Doctors’ Surgery in Sherborne. If necessary, the school has easy access to two local hospitals; neither of which have got close to capacity during the crisis.

HOW WILL PUPILS BE KEPT SAFE IN SCHOOL?

  • The School has appointed a COVID Manager who will oversee all practical and operational aspects of keeping the school community safe.
  • Leweston has committed to the BSA’s COVID Safe Charter.
  • We have implemented a plan to make the most of our space and allow for social distancing throughout the day. This includes various one-way routes and associated signage and sanitising stations.
  • Pupils will be taught in bubbles based on the key stages with the school divided into zones. Each bubble will occupy one zone with students taught in classrooms within that zone.
  • There will be different entry points to the school which will be allocated to a specific bubble.
  • Meals will have staggered timings to allow pupils to social distance and the school caterers will apply all appropriate protocols as communicated by Public Health England.
  • ‘Whole school’ gatherings such as assembly or Mass will not happen until such time as it is safe to gather in larger groups until then as many a possible will be delivered virtually.
  • Pupils and staff will be encouraged to report any concerns to the COVID Manager.

HOW WILL BOARDERS BE KEPT SAFE?

  • Dormitories at Leweston are small. Year 11 to 13 will have their own rooms and the boarding team will ensure that boarders in Years 10 and below have maximum allocation of personal space.
  • The Boarding Houses will form individual ‘households’ with their own entry and exit route and limits on communal areas.
  • Deep cleaning of all spaces will take place on a regular basis.
  • Regular flexi-boarders will be able to join the boarding houses as normal.
  • Staff will be trained in the safe management of boarding houses under the new guidance.

WHAT HAPPENS IF SOMEONE ONSITE SHOWS SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19?

  • Our Health Centre team will be working closely with the school doctors at the Apples Medical Centre and Public Health England.
  • If a day pupil or a staff member shows symptoms associated with C-19 they will be sent home immediately and asked to attend at a local testing centre.
  • If they test positive they, and their household, must self-isolate for 10 days excluding the day of onset. If a member of the household develops symptoms they must get tested too.
  • You can book a test online at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19 or call 119.
  • If the test result from the symptomatic person is negative they can return to school once they are better and no longer showing symptoms of any illness. Other members of their household can stop self-isolating

WHAT HAPPENS IF THERE IS A POSITIVE CASE ON SITE?

  • If a test result is positive, Public Health England (South West) will be contacted for advice on actions and initiation of NHS contact tracing procedures.
  • We will identify those ‘contacts’ who have been in close contact with the individual. They will be advised as per current government guidelines to isolate for 10 days.  Should they develop COVID 19 symptoms, NHS guidelines should be followed and a PCR test should be obtained.
  • Day pupils who test positive will isolate at home, boarders will be required to return home or to a UK based guardian. We do recognise that for overseas pupils this might not always be possible and in such cases, students will be isolated in their boarding house and participate in lessons remotely.

DO PUPILS HAVE TO WEAR FACE MASKS?

Both students and all staff are required to wear face masks as per government guidance in all communal areas. They are also required in classrooms and meeting rooms where 2m distance cannot be maintained.   Please contact Mr Stuart Whittle should you have any concerns regarding this matter.  By being compliant in this guidance it is helping not only keep our community safe but also providing reassurance to colleagues and pupils alike.

HOW WILL TEACHING AND LEARNING WORK IF MY CHILD CANNOT ATTEND SCHOOL?

  • The teaching staff delivered exceptional remote teaching to all our students during lock down.
  • We will make provision for work to be sent to pupils who are unable to come to school because they are isolating at home.
  • If a student travelling from overseas is unable to travel we will provide work for them to complete at home.

ARE MINI BUSES STILL OPERATING?

  • The school buses will be running as normal from the start of term.
  • Whilst social distancing is not currently required on dedicated school transport, students will be asked to sit with other students in their year group bubble as much as possible.
  • Hand sanitiser will be used when boarding and alighting from the vehicles and additional vehicle cleaning will be taking place.
  • All pupils must wear face coverings during their journey, please ensure that your child travels with one.

WHAT SPORTS WILL BE OFFERED?

  • The Sports Department will be providing as near to a ‘normal’ term programme as possible, however, some adaptations are needed and fixtures will not be played.
  • We will continue to closely monitor the guidelines published regularly by national governing bodies for each sport which take into account social distancing as well as reduced contact and shared equipment.
  • In both lessons and clubs pupils will remain within their bubbles. On days when pupils have PE lessons they will be coming into school in their kit to avoid changing in enclosed spaces.
  • The school will be offering the opportunity for competition via intra-school matches, again within the bubbles as well as the opportunity for pupils to take part in intra-club time trials to test their individual performance against each other.

WHAT ACTIVITIES AND CLUBS ARE RUNNING?

  • We intend to run as ‘normal’ an activity programme as possible however some activities such as choirs, hymn practices or larger instrumental ensembles will not be permissible.
  • Music and Drama will provide opportunities to perform in a variety of ways
  • Social distancing rules will be applied and activities will be delivered in year group bubbles where possible.
  • The programme of weekend activities will continue with a focus on providing social opportunities within the boarding households.

HOME TESTING KITS

Currently we expect to be distributing home test kits for all staff and Senior School pupils across the whole site.  Timings for this are not yet published and as soon as they are, they will be disclosed.  The test centre will continue to test until such a time.