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Return to school this Wednesday or Thursday Week 5.

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Kia ora te whānau

 

Well here we are!  We have made it to the start of Term 4 onsite – it is official.  A huge welcome to all of you arriving back.  We are not in a normal stage of schooling so please acknowledge that the return is not what tamariki have been used to in the past. In saying that, we endeavour to make this as positive as possible for our tamariki, whānau and staff. Currently we have 90% indicating they will be returning to school.

 

We have two priorities:

  • Health and safety
  • Wellbeing for tamariki and staff

 

The aim for this newsletter is to share the key information with you.  Please read it as this is vital to ensure a healthy return.  Much of this is directly from the Ministry of Education.

Staff have been preparing the classes to follow the guidelines and to provide learning opportunities in our circumstances.  

It has been an incredibly complex process, especially the groupings, the staggering of intervals, arriving and leaving school.  We have tried to make it as clear as possible.

We have created a FAQ further down for you to digest and discuss with tamariki

 

 

Our vision for 2021 could not be more relevant

  • Be kind to yourself, to those around you and to the environment.  
  • Wellbeing for tamariki and staff.
  • Grow creativity and unlock curiosity.

 

Key points:

Parents and caregivers

  • Adults continue to provide the greater risk for transmission of COVID-19, and therefore at Alert Level 3 congregating by parents and caregivers on the school site should be avoided wherever possible.
  • Parents should wear face coverings when dropping off and picking up students from school and remain distanced from the school as much as possible. As recommended, our staggered pick-up and drop-off system will support this.
  • If parents or caregivers do need to come on site we ask that you wear a mask, contact trace and leave a 2 metre distance between yourself and anyone from a different bubble. Please do not enter the office or a classroom without us following the correct protocol.  
  • Congregating socially outside the school gates is an example of what needs to be avoided. 

 

Staggered system for arrival and exit of school

For arriving at school:

  • Please do not congregate outside of the school gate. If you come to the gate please scan. 
  • Please strictly adhere to the 2 metre distance between each whānau.
  • Unless we know about your circumstances, the carpark is strictly out of bounds so we can use the gates.
  • Always wear a mask.
  • Year 4-6 children must arrive wearing a mask before entering.
  • On arrival at school, tamariki must go straight to rooms, wash/sanitise hands before entering.
  • MOH strongly recommends that you do not enter school grounds unless it is absolutely necessary.   
  • Teachers will meet the children outside their class each morning.
Arrival timeGate
Juniors8.151, 2, (closest to hall)
Seniors8.253, 4
BusesOn arrival5 down steps to field

For leaving school

  • Unless we know about your circumstances, the carpark is strictly out of bounds so we can use the gates.
  • Please try and collect by parking and using the crossing, which will be staffed.  Keep a safe 2 metre distance.
  • Please let the bus queues cross the path if they are present so we do not intermingle.
  • Please pick up at your time and then leave promptly to avoid congregating.
  • Teachers will bring their class out to the gate whilst awaiting pick up.  
Leaving timeGate
Year 1-3 plus their siblings 2.15 pm1 (year 1), 2 (year 2) and 4 (Year 3)
Year 4- 6 2.30 pm1 (year 4) 2 (Year 5) , 3 + 4 (Year 6)
Bus Kids*2:20pm5

Buses*

We will operate the same school system as lines outside and separate, but tamariki will line behind a cone of their class group.

If it is dry we will walk across the field with the duty teacher (as we are outside) and wait at the bottom of the steps.  Principal will call for the classes from the path when the bus arrives. 

We have to keep a register for contact tracing on the bus and children will be spaced out.  We ask for masks to be worn for years 4-6 on the bus. 

  • At all alert levels, students aged 12 and over are required to wear face coverings on school transport, to align with the requirement to wear face coverings when on public transport
  • Students of all ages are encouraged to wear a face covering on all school transport services under all alert levels.

 

Te Huruhi FAQ

 

Mask wearing

 

For years 4-6 students and their staff are to wear masks inside whilst at school.  The office staff will also be wearing masks.  Tamariki and staff in Years 1-3 do not have to but may do so by choice and we encourage this where possible.

 

  • (EXPECTATION) At our school we will be creating a strong culture of wearing masks.
  • (WHY/VALUES) The reason we wear masks is to protect one another from catching covid-19. 
  • (WHEN) Masks are most important when we are indoors. 
  • (ENFORCEMENT) If your child arrives at school without a mask for the day (Year 4-6), we will provide them with a mask. (Accompany with info from Kidshealth on how to turn an adult mask into a child sized mask: https://www.kidshealth.org.nz/how-make-masks-more-effective; and a listing of cloth mask retailers)
  •  (INCLUSION) A small number of children in our community are not able to wear a mask all the time due to sensory or developmental difficulties and we will not tolerate stigma for these children. If everyone else wears a mask, it will protect these children too. 
  • Students aged 12 and above are expected to wear masks on school buses.

 

Physical and cultural activities/ playgrounds

  • Exercising and singing must be held outdoors.
  • Physical education classes and break time activities can include access to sports equipment including playgrounds, but hygiene practice should be observed before and after playing with equipment.
  • Playgrounds will be open and will be rostered.
  • Physical distance is not possible in some sporting activities. In these situations, extra emphasis on handwashing and drying (or cleansing with hand sanitiser) before and after activities.

Handwashing

  • Students will be asked to wash and sanitise their hands many times throughout the day.
  • Sanitising stations are set up in each classroom and children will be asked to sanitise on exit and entry.

 

Eating

  • Students will be eating outside.
  • They will not be allowed to share and we encourage litterless lunches/ take home coverings etc…so we do not make it a place for unwanted guests at night time.
  • Students will need a water bottle which can be refilled at school.
  • We are not offering any school lunch orders at the moment.

 

Feeling well

  • Please only send your tamariki if they are well.  This is vital.
  • Teachers will monitor health.and if we think a child is unwell, we will send them home straight away.

 

Sharing (eg sport equipment)

  • Students will be asked to wash their hands after each time they use the playground or use PE equipment
  • Scooters and helmets may still be used for breaks but can only be used by their owners.

 

Distancing

  • Students and staff will be distanced 1 metre inside and 2 metres outside
  • Classrooms are set up to support this.
  • Break times are staggered for bubbles.

 

Bubbles

  • Children will only be able to stay with their bubbles and teacher for the duration of this mandate.

 

Inside and outside

  • Staff are trying their hardest to spend most of the time outside where possible. We aim to reduce time in the class.
  • Please remember to apply sunscreen, wear hats and bring water.  Classes will also have a supply of sunscreen.
  • Wide brimmed hats are to be worn outside please
  • Classrooms will all be well ventilated with windows and doors wide open.  We are lucky with the air flow here.  Make sure your child brings a warm top as it can get chilly. 

 

Not normal

  • As mentioned many times, school will not be what it normally is.  We will focus on wellbeing to begin with and routines, but reconnection is the most important.  Please talk about this with your tamariki so we can work together on this.

 

Other key information:

Please also bring: 

  • a full water bottle (water).
  • a wide brimmed hat.
  • a warm top as the rooms can get chilly when the air is flowing through.

 

Public health measures required at all alert levels 

If a child or staff member is sick, they should stay home (phone Healthline or their GP and get tested if a doctor or health professional recommends them to do so):

  • staff are to observe students/children on arrival checking for symptoms and ask those presenting as unwell to go home or arrange for parents and caregivers to come and pick up. Please note, this does not mean that temperatures will be taken
  • Principals at state and state-integrated schools have authority to preclude a student from attending if they believe on reasonable grounds they may have a communicable disease under section 77 of the Education and Training Act 2020. See Guide to Legal Powers

 

In addition, use basic hygiene:

  • regularly wash and dry hands, cough and sneeze into your elbow, don’t touch your face (use hand sanitiser at entrances to classrooms for Alert Levels 2 and 3)
  • stringent self-isolation is needed for those who display relevant symptoms of COVID-19, test positive for COVID-19, or have been in close contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19.

 

 

We know this is alot of information and hopefully you will have the time to go through with your tamariki.  We look forward to seeing you either tomorrow or Thursday this week.  

Look after yourselves and stay kind!  It’s how we want to be! 

Ngā mihi maioha

Phil Wainwright

Acting Principal