Dear students and parents,
I am writing this as I am looking out in the main courtyard where our secondary students are eating their lunch. They are smiling and enjoying each others’ company. It is the first time they will have taken their masks off all day yet they are still keeping a safe distance from each other and putting their masks back on when they have finished eating. Earlier in the day, I was with our younger students who were conducting their lessons outside; again, they were able to adhere to safe distances, keep their masks on and were very conscious of the one way system around school. Washing hands constantly has become part of the school day as they transition from lesson to another. Classrooms look a little more regimented with desks spaced safely apart and they are slightly quieter spaces than they were this time last year, but there is still that unmistakable buzz of excitement and engagement that permeates these spaces. School certainly looks different but the sense of community and the overwhelming feeling of joy of returning supersedes this and reinforces my belief that schools are about community and relationships not just places where we go to learn.
Thank you to all parents that have helped contribute to our successful return to campus. Drop off and pick up each day has been remarkably ordered and although there have been a few glitches, these will be resolved as the days progress. In order to help with the start and end of day, could I please request the following:
- If you are able to walk or cycle to school, please do so and avoid using a car.
- If you are using a car, please drop off your children by the pathway right next to the school, (not in the middle of the car park area), where they can line up safely using the white spaced lines. The vast majority of students should be able to exit the car on their own with their bag without the driver exiting the vehicle or parking. If this is not possible, this should be done as quickly as possible to avoid queues and congestion and ensure the general safety of everybody else.
- Please do not park on the main road outside or near the school as this again causes disruption for everybody else and makes our job much more difficult of getting your children safely in school.
- Pick up will of course require some parking. In order for all families to complete this safely and quickly, please keep to your allocated time and depart as quickly and safely as possible.
- In all cases, please adhere to the instruction from our guards and dais who are there to ensure the safety, order and wellbeing of everybody.
All parents are reminded that snacks and lunches must be brought into school by their children in the morning. In order to keep our campus safe, we will not be allowing food deliveries during the school day.
We are not only appreciative of parents’ support with our return to campus but also your continued support in the timely payment of school fees. A gentle reminder that fees for Term 4 will be due by Sunday 11th April. If you envisage any problems in making this payment, please contact the Finance Department in advance. The notice of withdrawal date for Term 4 is today so please contact the Finance Department immediately! Fees for Term 4 have once again been frozen but there will not be a temporary bursary offer of 10% based on financial need as was the case in Term 3. We will continue to offer financial support for families that have financial difficulties through our bursary scheme and urge all families in need of this to apply: applications and all documents (these can be requested by contacting the Finance Department) must be submitted by Friday 26th March. Any applications received after this date will not be considered.
It has been such a tremendous week and it augurs well for our plans to move towards Phase 2. In order for this to happen, we need to maintain the guidelines and expectations we have set ourselves both on campus and outside of campus; with regard to the latter it is imperative that parents continually re enforce the safety guidelines with their children and ensure that they avoid large gatherings, wear masks, wash hands and keep a social distance (1.5 metres where possible) away from people outside of their immediate household/’bubble’.
Have a lovely weekend.