Dear Parents/carers,

We are sorry to have to tell you that we have been directed by Dudley Local Authority to cancel all planned Nativity/Christmas Presentations where singing is involved. As you know, we had studied the DfE guidance carefully and planned to video our Christmas performance so that parents could buy a DVD to enjoy, share at home with their children and keep as a lovely record for the future. The overwhelming majority of parents had given consent and the videographer was booked.

Unfortunately, all Dudley schools have received the message below:

"Singing and Christmas, update from Dudley Public Health and Dudley Performing Arts"

As Dudley currently has one of the highest Covid-19 rates in the country, we feel that it would be appropriate to minimise all risks associated with singing in schools. As such our joint advice is that classes of children should not be singing together, either within their bubbles or in mixed groups (individual students can sing during 1 to 1 tuition in well ventilated spaces and it may be possible for groups to sing outside).

An implication of this is that schools should not be practising singing with groups of students and this would include preparation/filming for virtual concerts. This also means that school involvement with the Dudley Christmas Concert should not go ahead as planned."

We have re-checked with the LA to be absolutely clear about this directive and have had confirmation this morning that the LA stance is that we cannot go ahead as planned.

We really appreciate how disappointing this news is for you - the staff share your disappointment too, particularly since we have already organised the following to try to make the event possible:

·         Ordered a play as a basis for the Christmas production

·         Organised the filming of the production by an outside company

·         Sent out letters to parents asking for consent, collated responses and collected money 

·         Banked money

·         Allocated parts for children and distributed them to children who have a speaking part

·         Organised rehearsals - socially distanced

·         Organised costumes ready for use by year 2

·         Begun to create resources for a 'backdrop' for the performance

We can only apologise for the disappointment, but we have to make sure that we follow the instruction as the need to remove risks and protect children, parents and the community has to come first at the present time.

We will, of course, issue refunds to everyone who had ordered DVDs. We would be grateful if you could please bear with us and be patient - this is another huge task for the office team on top of their other work, but all refunds will be sent to you by the end of term at the latest. We will issue cheques to be sure that your refund reaches you safely.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank the staff who have been working so hard to salvage as much as possible of the usual Christmas activities. All other activities will go ahead as planned, unless we are advised differently by Public Health and Dudley Local Authority. We will do our best to make the last couple of weeks in school as happy and festive as we can under the circumstances.

We are sure that, despite your understandable disappointment, you will support us and understand the position that we are in.

Best Wishes,

Mrs Miller and Miss Stanton

 

 

 

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