School operations under Covid Alert Level 2

We have had a busy week getting ready to welcome students back to school! We are really looking forward to seeing your children again, and to supporting them. I would like to remind you of the statements made by the Director General of Health when the decisions around Level 2 were made:

‘Our experience in New Zealand and overseas with COVID-19 over the last four months shows that it does not infect or affect children and teens in the same way it does adults. Children and teens have low infection rates, they don’t become that unwell if they do get infected, and they don’t tend to pass the virus on to adults.’

Even with this in mind I want to reassure you that we are working hard to ensure we have the necessary health precautions in place. Examples of these include:

Contact tracing for everyone who comes onsite.
Hand sanitiser in all classes, and soap and paper towels in all bathrooms
Keeping students apart as much as possible by rearranging furniture, controlling entry and exits from classrooms and limiting the numbers of students in common spaces like the library.
Regular cleaning and sanitising of frequently touched surfaces such as door handles,
Signage up around the school to remind children of the important things like hand hygiene and coughing/sneezing into elbows.
The canteen will only operate on pre-order and delivery, there will be no sales from the window.

Under Alert Level 2 schools have no restrictions on numbers of people indoors or outside, because we are considered to be a managed environment. While this means that technically we could hold whole school assemblies in the hall, we have decided to take a cautious approach and not have assemblies for now. We are also being conservative with the reintroduction of sports practices, and will communicate with you as trainings gradually get up and running.

As parents and caregivers we ask that you please:
– Keep your child at home if they are sick, and notify the school
– Remain off the school site, if you bring your child to school,
– Do not congregate outside the gate in close proximity to members of other whānau, it is best to wait in your vehicle if you have one.
– Send your child to school with a full water bottle to reduce reliance on shared water fountains.

For children who are unable to attend school there will still be distance learning opportunities, however please remember these will be different to what you will have experienced under Covid Alert Levels 3 and 4. For example most teachers will not have opportunities to host Zoom classes. Learning content will however be accessible from home, through the Google Classroom sites, and students are able to communicate with their teacher through email or the Google Class if they need help.