I hope you’ve all managed to have a good weekend despite the weather. It’s been really interesting seeing my neighbourhood full of people – usually all you see are cars leaving at 7am to commute to the city. I guess there’s an upside to every situation.
It’s great news that we’re moving closer and closer to normal in Christchurch. Alert Level 3 is a step closer to being back to normal (well as normal as things have been since March 2020).
It’s extremely important to recognise that Alert Level 3 is not a return to business as usual. Level 3 is basically the same as Level 4 in the fact that most people are expected to remain at home.
Level 3 for schools is extremely difficult to manage as it comes with many rules. I would appreciate your support in making this hopefully transitional phase an easy and safe one for all of us.
Before I get into the detail I thought it was prudent to say that there’s still no final confirmation from the government on dates yet. I’m preparing as if we are open for essential workers children from Wednesday but I’ll update you if this is not the case.
Learning at home during Alert Level 3
For most of you your learning will continue just as it did last week. Make sure that you check in with your child’s teacher if you need any support or guidance
Learning at school during Alert Level 3
The first important thing to note is we can only be open for students from preschool to year 10. All students in Years 11, 12 and 13 must continue to work from home.
The second important rule is that if you can continue to support your child to learn from home, you must. If you’re unsure there’s a nice flowchart you can use linked here. The school will open with a very limited staff who must work under strict Ministry of Health and Ministry of Education rules. For example, staff with children are expected to continue to work from home and staff with underlying medical conditions cannot come into work at Level 3. I say this to highlight that the school will be running with a skeleton staff and as such we cannot continue to run as we would at Level 2 or Level 1.
If you are an essential worker and have no alternative childcare for your child, you can send them to school.
It’s important to know that school will not look like normal school. It will look like learning from home but at school. Students will be working larger independently, in potentially multi-level groupings of no larger than 10 and will have limited ability to interact with others. They will continue to do the work that was expected of the rest of their class, with the only difference being their location.
In terms of pick up and drop off, I’ll outline this in more detail once I know numbers and staffing but you can expect a 9am-3pm day with strict contact tracing and physical distancing protocols to be in place.
Furthermore, we will only be working with students of families that we are expecting. You cannot just drop your child off. We need to know who to expect so I can correctly staff the school.
To do this you need to email me directly at email@example.com with the times and days that your child will need to be at school.
You need to do this at the latest by 1pm the day before your child is expected to come to school. Preferably I’d like to know by the end of Monday so that I can use Tuesday to prepare the appropriate number of staff.
If you do not do this, we cannot have your child at school.
I appreciate that some of you will not be happy with this level of regulation but it’s important to stress that this is not a school decision. We are under strict expectations from the government. I do not have the option to pick and choose which rules I’ll follow and which ones I won’t.
If you have a concern, you’re best to email me directly and I’ll try to work with you to make this transition as easy as possible.
Finally, I’ve also been asked to remind families that the school grounds are closed at Alert Level 4 (and remain so at Level 3 except for the students and staff who must attend). You cannot come on site for any reason at Alert Level 4. At Alert Level 3 can only come on site to pick up or drop off your child. We would appreciate your support with this.
- If you can keep your child at home you must
- If you are an essential worker and have no other option, you can send your child to school / preschool
- To do this, email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your child’s name, times (“From 9-3” or “From 9-12”, for example) and days (“Wednesday, Thursday and Friday”)
- School lessons will look the same as the material that has been provided for your child to learn from at home.
- When you drop off and pick up your child you must sign in and maintain physical distancing.
- Your child cannot be onsite before 8.50am or after 3.10pm
- The school grounds remain closed for all others (including staff not working at school)
- More info will come with specifics on Monday or Tuesday.
Ngā mihi nui
Steven Mustor – Acting Principal