The Wokingham Paper

Leighton Park School makes 19,000 face shields for front line workers

A SCHOOL PPE initiative has created new measures to ensure protective visors can continue to be made.

Leighton Park’s face shield hub — consisting of 22 schools — has created 18,713 protective visors, but as summer term began many of their volunteers had to return to teaching.

To manage the high demand, 20 furloughed support staff have offered their free time to assist the initiative, and the University of Reading has also joined in, quickening the process by making shield bands with its two large laser cutters.

Mark Smith, head of DT and Engineering at Leighton Park, said:“We’re still making between 1,200 and 1,500 per day and we’ve got loads of drivers involved – even old Leightonians, current parents and some kind residents in the local area have volunteered to deliver face shields. 

“It’s such a community effort and I think everyone wants to play a part where they can. 

“We’re getting fewer individual orders but each order is for a greater volume so that obviously makes it easier to coordinate deliveries – we can quickly bundle them up and get them out, it’s brilliant.”

So far, visors have been delivered to frontline healthcare sites such as Choice Care Group, Sue Ryder Duchess of Kent Hospice and Royal Berkshire Hospital.

The care group’s chief commercial officer, Gareth Williams, added: “With 1,500 frontline staff across the South of England, we were extremely grateful to receive 1,600 face shields from Leighton Park School. 

“This gave us enough shields for one per staff member, plus some cover for new staff as we continue to grow. 

“With everyone getting their own shield and with each of the shields being re-usable post sterilisation, this significantly reduces the risk of cross-contamination and is a fantastic addition to our armoury in the fight against coronavirus. 

“The local community support shown across this pandemic has been second to none and with the government facing their own PPE struggles, it’s been amazing that Leighton Park School has been able to supply these critical goods for us. 

“This pandemic continues to be a running challenge for the homes, but these selfless acts of kindness from the local community are what keeps spirits high and momentum lifted.”

To find out more about face shields, contact faceshields@leightonpark.com

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