What a week!! We are in challenging, uncertain times and as a school we are navigating daily our way through what education is to look like for the next few months. We are literally attempting to follow Government guidelines as best we can, keeping in mind duty of care and social distancing recommendations. Yesterday we sent home a letter detailing what learning will be provided for the remainder of the term as well as moving forward into next term. From Term 2, it is predicted that all schooling will be via remote learning. This will be different for each age group but teachers will predominantly use Google Classrooms as well as explicit learning and activity matrix.
Whilst it is still unclear when remote learning will begin, I would like to set some guidelines and expectations for when this occurs. Beginning next term, teachers will be available to students during normal school hours via email or discussion boards. However, parents need to be mindful of the fact that families will be juggling their own needs during this time and may not be immediately on call. I think we all need to respond flexibly to meet the needs of both staff and students during this time. I will available throughout each school day to respond to emails.
Additionally, can I ask that if you have kept your child/children home since the advice was handed down early in the week, please confirm this by email as we legally still have to account for all absences during the pandemic.
We were thrilled to have our Snack Shack back up and running for lunch orders for the last couple of Fridays. Katrina and Sarah have created some wonderful new menu items that are very popular. Unfortunately, we have had to close this facility indefinitely at this time but hope to reopen as soon as school life returns to some normality. They will continue to expand the menu and experiment with new options as the year progresses.
Due to the uncertainty in education at this time, Helen Garrity will not be leaving St Bede’s at the end of this term. Helen has kindly offered to stay with us until we are sure about what is happening in schools for the coming months. With this in mind, Helen will set the remote learning for 5/6 Gold for Term 2 and will continue to be the point of contact for that class.
Easter falls in our school holidays this year and whilst our traditional ‘Stations of the Cross’ will not take place this year due to COVID-19, we will still have our Easter egg raffle draw. Donations and tickets need to be returned by tomorrow please. The raffle draw will be early next week. Prize winners will be notified by phone or email so that they can collect their baskets!
The construction site next door has been digging a large hole for the underground car parks for over a month now. Beginning shortly, a bus bay will be constructed at the front of the school. On completion, I am hoping to repair the front fence and smarten up the front entrance to the school. The buses will collect the students from the other side of our driveway until this is completed.
On a brighter note, new interactive screens in the remaining three classrooms (Kindergarten, Year 2 and Year 5/6 B) were installed last week. This means we now have up-to-date smart screens in all learning areas except the multi-purpose room. I hope to remedy this situation in the coming months.
We appreciate that for many this unprecedented time is very difficult. The staff of this amazing school have been truly professional and hard working in adversity while we plan for education in 2020. I thank the whole community for their understanding and support during this time. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.