Kia ora – Welcome back!

It is wonderful to say “haere mai” once again! We are really looking forward to having all our students back with us from next Monday 18th May. We hope you are all excited about this as well. 🙂 Things will be a little different as we comply with distancing, hygiene and contract tracing rules, but we are very pleased with the new Level 2, more relaxed, common-sense approach, for children mixing. 

It has been very difficult for the staff and students who have been trying to keep the 2m distance in and out of classrooms, with no sharing of any equipment at Level 3. This will still have to continue until this Friday for our three onsite bubbles. School-wide online learning will be concluding this Friday 15th. We ask that students stay home until we are properly open under Level 2 on Monday 18th May, so that teachers can prepare their classrooms for Level 2. If you are needed back at work on the Thursday and Friday under Level 2, your children may go and play at a friend’s place.

Level 2:- 

Firstly here are the main Government messages. 

Play it safe

You will have more freedom of movement at Alert Level 2, but it’s up to each one of us to keep the rest of New Zealand safe.

These are the most important things that you can do:

  • COVID-19 is still out there. Play it safe.
  • Keep your distance from other people in public. (Ideally 2 metres)
  • If you’re sick, stay home. Don’t go to work or school. Don’t socialise.
  • If you have symptoms of cold or flu, call your doctor or Healthline and get tested.
  • Wash your hands. Wash your hands. Wash your hands.
  • Sneeze and cough into your elbow, regularly disinfect surfaces.
  • If you have been told to self-isolate you must do so immediately.
  • Keep a track of where you’ve been and who you’ve seen.

Follow these physical distancing rules:

  • Keep your distance in public from people you do not know. (ideally 2 metres)
  • 1 metre physical distancing in most other environments, unless there are mitigating measures. Examples of environments where you should maintain 1 metre distancing include cafes, church groups, gatherings, restaurants and retail stores.
  • Take extra care if you interact with people you don’t know, as it won’t be easy to do contact tracing if necessary. These situations include playgrounds, parks, shopping malls or walking along the street.

For Schools:-

  • Maintain physical distancing where practicable – in schools at Alert Level 2 this means children, young people, and staff maintaining a physical distance, so that they are not breathing on or touching each other. 
  • Keep track of people that enter your school – through your attendance register, timetable and visitor register.

Level 2 – What it is going to look like at our School? 

  • Health & Hygiene:-
    • We will increase the cleaning of communal hard surfaces, door handles, desks etc frequently. Play equipment will also be wiped down more regularly.
    • Every staff member will have their own spray and wipe and cloth to clean communal surfaces.
    • There will be one entry door per class, which will have a hand sanitisation station on entry – for use every entry.
    • Teachers will be reinforcing and teaching about handwashing, coughing into elbows and staying home if you are sick in any way! 
    • Students will be given time to wash their hands thoroughly with soap before each break time.
    • Soap and hand towels will be regularly replenished in all toilet and class areas, with signs and reminders about the importance of handwashing.
    • Any staff member or child with symptoms of a sore throat, raised temperature, coughing & sneezing will be sent home to get well and be tested. 
  • Social Distancing & Contact Tracing:-
    • To limit numbers on site, we ask parents to please drop your children and collect them from outside the fence – spaced 2 metres apart.
    • Parents of our brand new New Entrants in Puriri 5 may have one parent bring your child to the classroom and initially, as we have only a few students, you may enter through the sanitisation station and record your contact details and time of arrival and departure. 
    • Parents of Year One students if needed and those of students who may have special needs to help them get to school, may enter the school and meet outside classrooms with their teacher aides and classroom teacher. Please communicate with your teacher or teacher aide before this happens. You will also need to complete the classroom contact register. 
    • Please continue to ring or email the office with requests and pay directly into our bank account – students will become the couriers. If you do need to come in – once again, completing the contact register and hand sanitisation station along with 2m distancing are required. 
    • Please keep 2m apart – if possible at all times. We will have marks on the pavements as a reminder.  
    • Hillcrest High School & Berkley Normal Middle School students, along with any other students not enrolled at our school or in After School Care, must stay out of our site and walk around the outside of the fence. They may wait under the cover of the TCC entranceway. We have placed our bike racks by the TCC to make this easier for senior students.
    • Gates:- All gates will be open and available for students to access their classrooms to allow greater spread. 
    • Before school – Students need to go straight to their own classrooms rather than having everyone mixing outside.
    • Choose your gate so your children know where you will be meeting them after school. Teachers may have students spread out near the gates to ease any congestion. 
    • Please stay in cars if the area is too congested and students can stay on the inside until you are ready. 
    • The bus will be operating as normal with our usual register being taken. Hand sanitisation will be happening before entering the bus and children will be spaced as best practicable.  
  • Onsite – staying out of moist air zones:- 
    • Three mini schools will be operating on site; Taupiri, Pirongia and Maungatautari. 
    • To create more space in the playground and avoid unnecessary mixing of big numbers, we will be staggering the use of play areas and break times amongst our three Syndicate groups. 
      • Maungatautari Lunch will start at 11:45am 
      • Taupiri Lunch = 12:00noon
      • Pirongia Lunch = 12:25pm 
    • Playground equipment has been water blasted and will continue to be regularly cleaned.
    • As per usual there will be no sharing of food. 
    • All children to please bring their own water bottles to school.  
    • We will also be operating two staffrooms to allow staff to keep their personal bubbles intact, with the Koromiko – After School Care kitchen being used as well.
    • Children will have their own table/desk space and floor space to help keep a reasonable spacing.
    • Cross grouping will only occur within Pods not fully across syndicates and tables and desks will be wiped between any changes of students. 
    • Games will be limited, initially to those where students do not get too close. e.g. Basketball, Soccer, Handball, Gutterball, Cricket.
    • Library Books and Readers:- We will have a 72 hour stand-down period for all library books and readers, before they are re-issued to other students. 
    • Children can bring back all their readers and library books to be put into bins in their classrooms to start our onsite term. 
  • Here is a cute video clip to watch so all children can better understand about the moist air zone before coming back to school. I will also be doing a welcome video clip before the end of the week to help all children understand what is expected under Level 2. 
  • Itinerant Teachers:- 
    • Music Tuition and other extracurricular activities will resume once each provider is checked for their plans and systems. E.g. Piano Tuition with Gill Earwaker will start from Tuesday. Each student will arrive and hand sanitise, with Gill cleaning the Piano down between each student and keep her own COVID Tracing register. 
    • SPELD will also be starting with Sandy Dougherty and she will be cleaning the area down between each student and following other procedures.
  • Before & After School Care:-
    • Please text or ring in advance if you will be dropping your children in at the gate for Before School Care.
    • After School Care will look a little different as well, with three classroom areas being used. Taupiri students will be based in the main Koromiko building. Pirongia students will head to Nikau 1 and Maungatautari Students will be based in Kauri 2. 
    • Playtimes will again be staggered or spaced out in different areas. 
    • Food preparation will be completely separate and staff will bring pre-prepared sandwiches and fruit to each individual child, who has washed their hands and are seated and spaced out. 
    • Seniors – will be allowed to use their devices at this time on specific programs only. e.g.Matific, Mindcraft, SeeSaw, Epic, Code.org, KiwiKids News.
    • Pick Up. Please ring or text and your child will be signed out and join you at the usual gate. 
  • Tamahere Community Centre:- The guidelines from the Waikato District Council state that users must keep a minimum of 1 metre distance from others, with no more than 10 people per gathering/booking (this means 10 people per booking within the entire hall). And bookings are limited to 2 hours only,  with all attendees to be recorded to ensure contact tracing can be conducted if necessary. As we move further into Alert Level 2, it is anticipated that these guidelines will be reviewed.