An email and SMS will be going out to all parents regarding attendance for next week. If you could answer it immediately, then that would help the site immensely. A response before 1pm, 24/04/20 (Friday) will allow us to be as accurate as possible with our planning.

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

Advice from SA Health and Australia’s expert health body, AHPPC, remains unchanged. Schools, preschools and early childhood facilities are low risk environments for COVID-19, and will remain open.

Of course, we will continue to respect the preferences of parents. If you don’t feel comfortable sending your children to school or preschool for whatever reason, you won’t be obliged to.

Right now, no one has the right answers. The school position is that of the department and we are all trying to do what we think is best for all students. I understand the trepidation that parents have and the one big question on their minds being, ‘Will my child have the opportunities to receive the same education if I decide to keep them at home?.’

Our Week 1 program will be a digital one and may look different depending on what grade your child is in. This will be dependent on the percentage of students we have on-site and how many we will have at home. Please note that Week 2 may look different again due to changing student numbers.

Week 1

We are proposing that Week 1 will look like the following

  • Early Learning Centre – Please see the letter that was sent out on the 7th of April. This can be accessed from the Skoolbag app and advice has not changed.
  • R-2 (Maitland) – Mixture of digital and face to face learning. Literacy, Numeracy and Child Protection Curriculum will be digital and CYS will try their best to make sure that students will spend the majority of time with their class teachers.
  •  R-2 (Point Pearce) – Online learning delivered by PP staff
  • Years 3-6 – Digital learning, with lessons delivered online. Students not in lesson will be supervised by staff, however every effort will be made to have students supervised by their class teachers.
  • Years 7-10 – Digital learning, students will have lessons delivered online with students at school in the class with the teacher, but staff still teaching through a device for all students. All student work is online on Canvas and will be completed by all students. It will be a mix of blended and flipped learning.
  • Years 11 and 12 – Will continue the way it has been. All work has been online all year for students to work through and will be a mix of blended and flipped learning.

Our decision for Week 1 has been made due to the following factors.

  • Attendance is still unknown and while we have an indication, parents also have the right to change their mind.
  • Point Pearce students are in lock down and will be learning from home via digital means.
  • Some parents will exercise their right to keep their children at home. Education programs need to be accessible and equitable for all students regardless of where they are choosing to learn from.
  • Staff have been working through holidays to prepare learning programs and resources to help students in this time of uncertainty.

I understand that this is not perfect and we will look at this in 6 months time and see ways that we could have done this better. However, at this point in time this is what I feel provides the best environment and supports learning for all students at CYS. The important thing for all parents and staff is to recognise that we need to be agile and flexible in regards to student learning. Information is changing daily and therefore we need to be able to adapt and adjust to the most current advice while keeping the wellbeing and education of staff and students as our top priority. Any changes will be communicated with parents.

While schools are low risk environments for COVID-19, there are measures we will continue to take to further reduce the risk of transmission. The department will maintain increased cleaning schedules at all sites, and will source hygiene products such as hand soap, sanitiser and tissues. As a site we will look to adhere to social distancing measures as well as following government advice on keeping our playgrounds closed.

As you would also understand we are working with children who may not always remember social distancing and we will continue to encourage this as best we can and set classrooms up as best we can to meet the needs of the current situation.

What can parents do to help?

  • Please also make sure that the school has the most up to date information re email addresses and parent phone numbers.
  • If you have decided to keep your students at home and then after Week 1 decide that you want your children at school, can you please give us 48 hours’ notice in case we need to change supervision and ratio arrangements for your child’s class at school. We might also have to let bus drivers know etc.
  • Parents are asked to drop off and pick up their students at the school gates and not enter the site.
  • If you have collected a device for Home Learning, but are now intending on sending your child to school, you will need to return it so students can access devices at school.

Facilities in Term 2

  • School buses will run as normal – If a run has zero students on it then we will stop it until we are contacted by parents to let us know that their children will be utilizing it again.
  • Drink taps – Will be closed to the school community. We ask that students bring their own water bottles to school. Water will be made available if they want to fill it during the day.
  • School Canteen – Will be open for business as usual.
  • Shool Playgrounds – Health advice from the department say that playgrounds are ok for students to play on.
  • Hand wash, Hand sanitiser and tissues are available in all classes.

First Day Back Procedures

Please note that all students will be in Care Group from 8:45am until the end of lesson 1 at 9:30am.

The Care Group teacher will be addressing both onsite students in person and be “Zooming” students who have remained at home at the same time. Please make sure you use your Care Group login for Zoom at this time. Staff will be going through the following.

  • The timetable – A copy of this is on the school website
  • How to access Canvas (secondary) and Google Classroom (primary)
  • How learning is going to look over Week 1 and support that is offered
  • This will allow us to mark rolls, chase up attendances, communicate daily notices with students and also support students that may have issues logging on.

If you do have any questions please do not hesitate to call me or email me at grant.keleher97@schools.sa.edu.au and I will endeavour to get back to you at the earliest possible convenience.

One last piece of information for all parents is to not stress about schoolwork. When school returns to normal, we will get all children back on track. Some parents are at home struggling with what COVID-19 has brought to the family unit. No students are ahead and no students are behind. They are all exactly where they need to be. So right now I just want you to share your calm, your strength and your laughter with your children. Your children’s education is what my staff are responsible for and I know that they are doing their utmost best and will continue to be outstanding in their pursuit to make sure that no child is left behind.

Yours Sincerely

Grant Keleher

Principal

Download this post as a pdf.