A high school in Salford has closed for the day over a ‘very high level of staff absence’.
Parents of pupils at St Ambrose Barlow RC High School in Swinton were sent emails and text messages this morning.
The school said the decision was also taken ‘because of uncertainty about further staff absence during the day’.
Coronavirus wasn’t specifically referenced in a statement on the school’s website.
Headteacher, Ben Davies, said the school ‘fully expects’ to be open on Monday.
Free school meals are being delivered home to eligible children, alongside online classes.
Mr Davies said in the message that opening the school would not have been ‘safe or responsible’.
He said: “It is with great great regret that I have taken the difficult decision this morning to close the school for one day to all pupils.
“This is because of a very high level of staff absence and because of uncertainty about further staff absence during the day.
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“As you know our priority at all times has been the safety of children and staff and it is very clear that opening this morning would not be safe or responsible and certainly would not ensure a high standard of education.
“During today teams of staff will:
– Deliver free school meals to all eligible children – these are being prepared as I write
– Ensure that all work is available on Google Classroom for all year groups
– Offer ‘live’ lessons or support where possible
– Prioritise check-in phone calls with vulnerable pupils in the first instance, beyond that we will contact more pupils directly if we have capacity.”
Parents are set to receive further updates.
“We fully expect to be open on Monday once we have greater clarity around staff availability and will communicate the details of this in due course,” Mr Davies added.
“I will update you throughout the day as necessary.
“Once again, I am very sorry that we have had to take this course of action and would reassure you that we are doing everything we can to limit the impact of it.
“The last seven weeks in school have been excellent.
“Your children have been a credit to you and we are very proud to serve them.
“On this most unusual day we will continue to act according to our mission statement and live out ‘loving, learning and leading’ in the care and education we provide for our pupils.”
The school on Ash Drive, Wardley, has 1,110 pupils on roll, according to its last Ofsted report.