Dear Parents and Caregivers,
I had planned to send this out at the end of the day, but I thought you may want an update a little sooner. Currently the email is correct, but I will say that these are fluid times and I will send an email if our situation changes.
By the end of the day the Ministry of Health will have contacted those students who had direct contact with our probable case. These students and staff have been kept in isolation for another week. Please note that this is a precaution and the Ministry will be looking after those families.
For those who have not been contacted by the Ministry of Health by the end of day, your sons/daughters will be able to shift from a health isolation to the normal isolation that the Prime Minister has instructed for all New Zealanders. This message has come from the Ministry of Health. I would say that the best way to look at “end of day” would be to keep isolation in place until tomorrow.
This is from the last email I sent: If you have not been contacted by health authorities by the end of the day Wednesday (25 March) you can then follow the self-isolation (level three and four) requirements as announced by the Prime Minister yesterday. If you have not been contacted by health authorities, you will have been deemed a casual contact. This means you are now in self-isolation as the rest of the community is and please do monitor your health for 14 days and report any symptoms immediately to Healthline on 0800 358 5453.
To put this in perspective during this stressful time, had this situation happened last week the school would have been cleaned and then reopened for normal instruction. This was the case with other schools that went through the same situation. I am exceptionally pleased that we are not having to reopen as I doubt that we would have many students attending.
Our whole country is in isolation now, and to be honest I believe the Government made a great decision to finally close all schools. What I hope is that the experience that we have just been through reinforces the need for following the strict advice on isolation. Please make sure your children (and yourselves) avoid all unnecessary contact outside of the home. If we can do this as a community we will be back at work and school after the isolation period. It is the best way for us to manage this situation.
As I am sure you will understand I have been somewhat busy over the last two days working and also sleeping from our small study at home. I want to thank those of you who have asked after me, it means a great deal. The media has constantly provided information that is ‘not quite’ correct. Whilst this does not help, there is little I can do influence this, and I apologise for any increased levels of anxiety.
I also want to thank the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education. They have supported our school and community during this event. Considering the decision to
health isolate happened Monday at 4.30pm they have done a great job to track, trace and contact people by the end of Wednesday.
• I will always pass on the information as soon as I hear. Currently the MOH have made the decision that all contacts have been made that need to be made. For those who have not been contacted, follow the process now. Stay at home unless you need essential items, you can go for a walk to get fresh air but keep the 2m distance, and contact the MOH line if you feel the need. I rang yesterday and although there were 62 people before me, they answered my call in 13 minutes. I thought that was exceptional considering what we are going through.
• If you work in an essential industry, I have no more information I can share. Your children are either in health isolation for another week or they are in normal isolation. You will need to contact your supervisor/manager and discuss with them if you fall in the first case. I am sure that the MOH has discussed this with you.
Finally, to get back to some sort of “normal”:
• As we have had an extremely stressful time over the last three days, I decided to not follow the guidelines given by the Ministry of Education for all other schools, and started our holidays yesterday. Many other schools will be still learning online, we are not.
• At the end of our holidays our staff will begin teaching online. I have a feeling that this will be a huge relief to the parents after two weeks at home with your children.
• You can expect a call from your child’s tutor teacher once a week beginning next week (I thought we should just get through this week). This is the time to raise any questions on learning, especially if they have not managed to connect with their teacher. This will be difficult for some teachers and staff, but I am hoping that a good 90% will make this happen.
This is an unprecedented time in our nation’s history. Our teachers are ready to continue teaching your children from home. Some have started already. It is a time for us to stand up, be there for each other, and to focus on that light at the end of the tunnel that is there, but just a little hard to see at the moment.
I have attached a document from Lucy Hone on Real-time resilience strategies for coping with coronavirus. Interestingly being wary of the media is one of them.
Take care, and look out for each other.
Dear Parents and Caregivers,