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The Elliot Foundation and Covid-19
The Elliot Foundation is a charitable Trust that operates 29 primary schools in the
. The board of trustees is the responsible body for the safety and wellbeing of all children and staff in all of our schools. This responsibility is delegated to the CEO and the Operations Group on a day to day basis to operate a framework for all of our schools that first makes them as safe as reasonably possible for children and staff and also meets our contractual and moral obligations to government and society as a whole.
Our approach to the safe provision of education during the pandemic is guided by
and is set out in our
principles and structures of reopening
approach to reopening
. Each of our schools has followed this approach and developed its own operational risk management document
based on this template
. We cannot share the actual documents as they name individual staff and children and to do so would breach our duty of confidentiality to their personal data.
Further detail on our specific Covid related policies
can be found here
Throughout this year we have worked closely with unions and professional associations to ensure that all our staff had a sense of agency over their own risks. We are delighted that over 90% of our staff felt that we had looked after their physical safety and 80% of parents felt that we had looked after their physical health and safety whilst 85% agreed we had also looked after their mental health and wellbeing.
We also asked our parents and carers how we are doing and 80% of them felt we were looking after both the physical and mental wellbeing of their children.
This is made all the more remarkable when almost 50% of respondents disclosed that they were either anxious or extremely anxious about children returning to schools and over 40% claimed that their personal or financial circumstances had been changed by Covid.
Supporting the community
As the Covid-19 pandemic sent the country into a national crisis, we mobilised to launch a Community Box Programme to help those within our communities in need. This became a partnership between the Elliot Foundation and sports charity, Rackets Cubed, to provide weekly boxes of food, hygiene and educational essentials to vulnerable families in our communities. Since March 2020 the partnership has distributed over 20,700 at a total value of £724,000. The programme sees our schools become distribution centres for weekly boxes made up of surplus food sourced from charities like FareShare UK and City Harvest, together with donations from local businesses. School staff volunteer with the packing and delivering of boxes to scores of families in need. We very much welcome staff to join in with the packing and collection process of our community boxes. The programme operates in 13 schools and we are committed to extending the programme beyond Covid-19 relief and we will ensure that it reaches all our schools and communities this academic year.
The project was picked up by the BBC, and Parkfield Primary had a well deserved moment of fame as they featured in a segment on BBC1’s Morning Live in November!
The impact of these community boxes has been significant, as one parent stated:
“Lockdown has been isolating, so coming here on a Friday has allowed us to see people and collect our boxes. It gives us a stock of fruits and vegetables, and if something drastic happens tomorrow morning, I know that I have got someone to help me - even with the basics.”
The community spirit has never faltered and we could not be more proud of the efforts that have been made to extend this campaign across all schools within our network. This campaign has embodied the values of the Elliot Foundation.