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Unity Schools Partnership moves to reassure Bury St Edmunds parents after coronavirus outbreak at Haverhill school

An academy trust which was hit by an outbreak of coronavirus has spoken of the measures it has taken at its other schools.

Samuel Ward Academy, in Haverhill , was forced to close on Monday and Tuesday after eight learning support assistants tested positive for Covid-19 and reopened on Wednesday for some year groups.

It is part of the Unity Schools Partnership, which in the Bury St Edmunds area includes County Upper School, Sybil Andrews Academy, Horringer Court and Westley Middle Schools, Tollgate Primary, Abbots Green Academy and Wickhambrook Primary Academy.

Following the outbreak, Tim Coulson, chief executive of Unity, moved to reassure parents of the measures taken at schools to minimise the coronavirus risk.

Dr Tim Coulson. (42213645)
Dr Tim Coulson. (42213645)

He said: “While the focus has been on Samuel Ward Academy, the rest of our secondary, primary and special schools within Unity Schools Partnership have reported a positive start to the new year.

“Prior to returning, each of our schools have their own detailed and bespoke risk assessment as we acknowledge a one-size-fits-all approach does not work.

“Many of the schools have staggered the return of various year groups and this phased return is in keeping with the diligent planning each primary, secondary and special school has undertaken to ensure our children return to a safe, welcoming and engaged environment.

Samuel Ward Academy
Samuel Ward Academy

“School leaders have carefully planned the return of school with various measures around social distancing, face coverings, enhanced hygiene and much more, in line with the national guidelines.

“Our schools have all worked together to share ideas and resources – and will learn lessons from each other as the new school year progresses.”

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