April 2020: School makes visors for frontline healthcare staff

OUR Design and Technology (D&T) faculty has manufactured over 1,400 safety face visors for frontline NHS and care home staff.

Staff responded to the national call and by Friday of last week, two members of staff were making deliveries in the school minibus, whilst observing social distancing guidelines, across Lancashire, Manchester, West Yorkshire and South Cumbria.

Head of D&T Mr Greenwood said: “We originally got an email into school about making face visors from my DT connections and I contacted the headteacher who was supportive of the idea.

“We had some materials in school to make 50 and we put out a plea through our website, Facebook and Twitter accounts to get more resources and Rossendale Plastics and Mabron Plastics both came forward.”

By the end of the last week, we had made nearly 600 visors. Teachers from all departments – from PE to languages, science to ICT, along with the senior leadership team, worked alongside students to create the visors.

The faculty’s two laser cutters have been going non-stop and, once finished, members of the school staff have been distributing visors to hospitals, pharmacies, care homes and medical facilities, responding to appeals for help.

Mr Greenwood said: “As a school we have remained open and staff are working on a rota basis to support vulnerable children and those whose parents are key workers.

“Colleagues have been in daily, including Good Friday and Easter Monday, making the face masks and we are spending money that has been donated to buy another 15 sheets from Rossendale Plastics; from five sheets we can make 500 visors.

“It has been a great community effort and we are pleased that we have been able to help.”

Modern foreign languages teacher Mrs Nixon said: “I spent the day making visors for NHS staff and carers. I’ll never forget the face of the lady at the chemists when I delivered some there. They were overjoyed.

“Thank you to all of the amazing people on the front line, keeping us safe.”

Haslingden High’s production line is continuing, and the school is grateful for all monetary donations that have enabled more raw materials to be purchased.

Mr Greenwood added: “The feedback from hospitals and care workers has been overwhelmingly positive and many have reported feeling safer carrying out their vital role.

“Staff and students have attached handwritten, personalised compliment slips to each face mask to show our appreciation of the work they are doing to keep our country safe”.

Headteacher, Mark Jackson, said: “The whole school community response has been heart-warming and a true reflection of the fantastic staff, students and parents we have here at Haslingden High School.

“We are delighted to have been able to provide this vital equipment to the front-line NHS staff and carers who are doing an amazing job in these very difficult times.”