Parents to miss school sports day as staff shortage raises Covid fear

Hunstanton Primary School

Hunstanton Primary School, where some parents have been told they will not be able to attend their child's sports day - Credit: Chris Bishop

Primary school parents have been told they will have to miss their children's sports day because of staff sickness.

Mums and dads with children in years one to five at Hunstanton Primary School have been told they cannot now attend the events, which were due to be held on July 6, 7 and 8 because of "staffing limitations". 

A letter from the school, seen by the EDP, says those with children in Year 6 can attend their child's sports day on July 12.

One parent, who asked not to be named, said: "It's really disappointing that Hunstanton Primary School has taken the decision not to allow parents to attend sports day contrary to clear government guidance which says schools can hold sports days and allow parents to attend. 

"Parents were really looking forward to this having not seen there children doing any school events for over 12 months."

Di Mapplebeck

Hunstanton Primary School head Di Mapplebeck - Credit: Di Mapplebeck

But headteacher Di Mapplebeck said: "Unfortunately, we have several staff off with serious illnesses, non-Covid related, which is limiting our capacity to manage parent safety on site during our sports days.

"We have already planned our sports day events over four sessions instead of our usual two, to limit cross bubble contact, but we do not have the capacity to do one sports day per year group for the same staffing reason. This decision was made with the safety of everyone in mind.

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"We have been contacted by several parents in response to our decision and we have explained our reasoning, parents have been informed that we have planned an additional sports day in September to which parents will be invited assuming the restrictions have been lifted and/or all staff are in school."

Mrs Mapplebeck said the school was "extremely disappointed" that it had not been able to share events with parents during the pandemic.

She added: "We are looking forward to September with hope and our sports festival will be our first opportunity to welcome our parents on site for a celebration with their children. We have really missed them."