Parent Information – Starting School 2022 – Covid Update

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

Happy new year, I trust that you have enjoyed some quality family time over the last few weeks with your child / children. A special welcome to all new families who begin their schooling journey with us at Craigburn.

By now, I’m sure you have become well acquainted with media reports regarding the commencement of the school year, which has been adjusted to help minimise the peak of COVID-19 cases in South Australia.

This involves a staged return to school over the first two weeks of term that balances every child’s learning entitlement with safety and risk management concerns.

Face-to-face learning has been prioritised for our youngest learners and for specific year levels that are transitioning. Remote learning will be provided for all other year levels.

The dates for the start of Term 1 are:

Monday 31 January:   Preparation day
Tuesday 1 February: Preparation day
Wednesday 2 February:

School is back

Face to face learning for: reception and year 1

Remote learning for: years 2 to 6

Monday 14 February: Planned return of face-to-face learning for all year levels.

Note: Teachers return to school in the week prior to the official start of the school year.

Preparation days (31 January and 1 February)

These days will be used by staff to prepare for the change to the start of term 1 – being for remote learning (year 2 – 6 students) and face to face teaching (reception – year 1 students).

For year 2 to 6 students involved in remote learning, information will be provided prior to Wednesday 2 February.

If you are an essential worker and do not have appropriate supervision for your child on these days, you can choose to send them to school to be supervised. Note: no formal learning program will be provided.

Face-to-face learning – Reception and Year 1

Will be provided for reception and year 1 students, starting Wednesday 2 February.

If you choose to keep your child at home, or if they are required to be isolated, a school based remote learning program will not be offered for these students. The Department for Education is developing online learning for reception to year 10 students that your child can access online. More detail will be provided before the school term commences.

Information regarding the processes for reception / year 1 pick up and drop off will be sent to families ahead of time. We can assure families that a successful transition is a priority and we will have processes in place to make this as positive as possible.

Regarding our planned family / teacher conversation times to meet with parents of reception children in the afternoons of the first week, these will now not take place. However, we are still keen to undertake these valuable connections and will be considering how we can do this in a modified form in the near future.

Remote learning – Years 2 – 6

Will be provided for Years 2 to 6 students, starting on Wednesday 2 February.

If you are an essential worker and required to attend your workplace and do not have any other appropriate supervision for your child, they can attend school. We will supervise them as they complete their remote online learning program. 

Start of the Year Learning Survey

We are requesting that all parents / caregivers complete the attached Start of the Year Learning survey for each child so that we can prepare for the beginning of the school year.

Please complete a survey for each child and answer all the questions as soon as possible, by Monday 24  January at 10.00am. Thank you for your support.

Minimising the spread of COVID-19

As the Omicron variant is so widespread, it is important that we do as much as possible to keep students and staff as safe as possible. To support this we will be implementing the following measures as advised by the Department for Education and SA Health:

  • Please keep your child home if they are unwell, even mildly.
  • Masks are required for all adults when indoors (except if it’s impeding our staff’s ability to communicate while teaching)
  • Masks are strongly recommended for children in years 3 to 6 when indoors.
  • Natural ventilation will be maximised by leaving doors/windows open, along with the continued use of air conditioning (set to fresh air intake where available) and fans where possible.
  • Some lessons will be held outside; where possible and weather permitting.
  • In a school setting, it is very hard to get students to physically distance themselves, however we will manage this as best as possible. Hand sanitising / washing will continue.
  • Children are to bring their own water bottles, which they can refill at school.
  • We will minimise students intermingling indoors, for example across class groups.
  • Non-essential visitors will be limited on site. We will work with parents of reception students who are starting school to make sure you are able to come onsite to be part of your child’s transition (in a COVID safe way). Families will be informed about safe drop off / collection of students.
  • School opens at 8:30am.
  • An extra daily site clean will take place (funded by the department).
  • Excursions and incursions will be placed on hold, along with assemblies and the gathering of classes together for activities.

Adults On School Grounds

We have been instructed to minimise adults coming onto school grounds for at least the first 2 weeks.

As mentioned, information regarding the processes for Reception / Year 1 pick up and drop off will be sent to families ahead of time. 

We encourage parents / caregivers of children in Year 1 and those who are essential workers of children needing to undertake remote learning at school – to refrain from coming on to school grounds. This is an opportunity for children to develop independence and to be self responsible.

If you do need to enter the school grounds, such as collecting a child from the office area, masks must be worn at all times. QR codes are still in place to be used if onsite.

Outbreak Management and RAT Testing

Given the transmissibility of the Omicron variant, there is a high likelihood that students and staff may contract COVID. In the event of an outbreak occurring we will be following the protocols provided to schools from the Department and SA Health. 

To assist us, it is required that any child, even if only mildly ill, must be kept home and not sent to school. If a child shows any signs of being unwell at school, parents / caregivers will be contacted to collect them.

The use of Rapid Antigen Testing in schools, is still to be finalised by the Department and SA Health. 

We understand and appreciate that you might have some questions and concerns about these changes and we will continue to provide updates as more information comes to hand. 

Please know that we will do our best to ensure a smooth start for children and families.

We look forward to seeing your child face-to-face or online to start the school year.

Take care and stay safe.

Kind regards,

Paul Luke – Principal