A GROUP of North-East schools have received widespread praise for going the extra mile during the Covid-19 pandemic to support children and their families.

West View Primary School, which is part of the Ad Astra Academy Trust comprising of seven primary schools, is one of the schools to implement several measures to support children and their families.

Some of the measures included arranging daily cereal and bagels along with weekly food parcels deliveries and food vouchers to families most in need; establishing a free clothing recycling scheme and providing essential household goods and personal items for families such as cleaning materials, toiletries and sanitary items.

Andy Brown OBE, chief executive officer for Ad Astra Academy Trust, said: "It has been a really challenging time for all schools and I cannot thank our staff, parents, governors and a number of outside organisations enough for everything that they have done to help ensure that our children continue to receive the best possible support during these difficult times. "

“As part of our role, it is hugely important to also provide support to families."

Ad Astra schools have also received widespread praise from parents for their efforts to deliver home learning when children have had to isolate in their homes.

Chris Twiby, headteacher at Crooksbarn Primary School in Stockton-on-Tees, said: "Covid-19 has presented schools with challanges we could never have imagined, but everyone involved with our school community has pulled together and worked incredibly hard to support children and their families."

“We have been able to mobilise home learning very quickly when it has been necessary and the feedback from parents has been very positive.”

One Crooksbarn parent commented: "This week has been made so much easier by the Year 1/2 Team. It was easy to follow and engaging and my daughter Meredith really enjoyed it. Thank you for all of your hard work this week with our children. We really appreciate it.”

Another parent said: "James has loved the online learning. I can’t believe how much he has enjoyed writing his poem. I just wanted to say thank you.”

Meanwhile, Ayersome Primary School have also taken measures to help their children and families with initiatives such as working with Middlesbrough Football Club Foundation to deliver food parcels to families.

They also established a scheme to provide winter coats for children who need them.