UPDATED 14 April 2020
Dear parents and caregivers
As the COVID-19 situation continues to develop, our school has been planning for a variety of scenarios — the main scenario being that children and students may need to learn at home during Term 2. I am writing to confirm the arrangement for our school for Term 2.
Term 2 arrangements — Weeks 1–5
The Queensland Government has decided that, in order to reinforce social distancing across the community and slow the spread of COVID-19, students will move to a home-based learning model from 20 April 2020 until at least 22 May 2020 (Weeks 1 to 5 of Term 2). A decision about the remainder of Term 2 will be made by mid-May. During this period, all students who are able to be supervised at home and learn from home are to stay home.
As was the case for the student-free days prior to school break, there will be exceptions for some students who will continue to be able to attend school: those whose parents or carers work in essential roles and must attend their workplace and cannot access alternative care, students identified as vulnerable, and students in designated Indigenous communities.
Each week, we will ask parents of these children to advise the school if they require their children to be supervised at school during this period.
Outside School Hours Care (OSHC)
OSHC services will continue to operate before and after school care where there is demand for services and particularly for vulnerable or children of essential workers. This will include on-site OSHC or other services off site that cater for school age children, such as long day care or family day care. Parents are encouraged to check with their local service.
Preparing for home learning
I acknowledge this is a challenging time for you and your child as you prepare to help them to learn from home. Our teachers and school staff have been working hard to plan for this approach and have developed learning programs that best suit the students at our school. Your child’s teacher will be in contact with you to let you know what to expect and how you can best support your child’s learning. We understand that some families may not have access to IT resources. Students will be able to engage in on-line learning on most popular tablets, laptops, computers and smart phones with a browser. There will also be some flexibility to share devices amongst your students at home and learning will also be available via ABC digital television and IView streaming services. Not all learning will be online, however your child’s teacher will discuss the possibility of loaning a school device to your child during the next few weeks if needed.
You may wish to explore the Department of Education’s range of learning@home parent resources online at https://education.qld.gov.au/curriculum/learning-at-home. The department is also working with television networks to develop new televised educational programs that will be broadcast on TV a number of days a week. Further information about these programs will be made available in the near future.
Please know that we are here to support you and your children. With our preparation and guidance and your support, I am confident that students will continue to learn and grow in Term 2.
To support parents and carers, some tips have been put together to make the transition easier:
Treat the first week as a ‘starting school’ or orientation type of week. Not everything will go to plan, and it might take a while to work out how to find and use the right resources and understand what’s best for you and your child. The ‘how to’ will come first, and then the learning.
Remember that your child's teacher usually divides their attention between up to 28 students who all work at different paces and need different levels of support. At home, two to three hours of learning each day will usually be plenty. Try using a range of other activities to keep children engaged and stimulated without becoming overwhelmed.
Routines and consistency can be a source of comfort for parents and children alike, but keep in mind that your routine doesn’t have to be the same as a school routine. If you use a timetable at home, make sure it’s manageable for everyone and flexible enough that you can adapt it as you learn what works.
This situation presents an opportunity for students to find out more about themselves as learners and to become more confident in self-directing their learning. Encourage your child to take responsibility for not only learning but also for staying in touch with their teacher, their class and their friends and community.
If your child is finding a task difficult, make suggestions and answer questions, but try to let them figure things out for themselves as much as possible. Give them opportunities, where appropriate, to take control of their own learning.
Remember this is new for us, too. You can help us succeed by letting us know if you’re unsure about something and using the preferred contact time and method that your teacher will advise you of.
Further information on supporting your child, maintaining healthy learning routines and setting up a learning space at home can be found at https://education.qld.gov.au/curriculum/learning-at-home/wellbeing-of-students.
While there will be some adjustments along the way as we learn together, our teachers are here to support your child’s learning. Please stay connected with your teacher, to our school and to one another.
Are You an Essential Worker?
We are finalising arrangements at this time. If you are an essential worker who needs to attend a workplace and cannot access alternate care, please provide details by replying to this email. This will enable us to organise supervision at school for these students.
Thank you for the support you are providing both your child and the school during these difficult times. You would have seen that all over Australia and the world, schooling systems are experiencing the same challenges with many countries also moving to home-based learning in response to COVID-19.
Our dedicated teachers and support staff continue to be here to teach and support your child. Together we will be learning and doing all we can to support you in this new mode of home-based learning. I assure you we will continue to maintain close contact with you over the next few weeks to provide learning for your child and together we will support each other and see all of our students continue to grow.
Easter School Vacation
Camp Australia have confirmed that they will continue to operate a vacation care program for those who require this.
The Term 1 break will begin on Monday 30 March 2020 for all state school students. The Term 1 break will begin on Monday 30 March 2020 for all state school students.
Five student free days have been declared for Monday 30 March – Friday 3 April 2020.
Staff of state schools and community kindergartens will begin their Term 1 break on Monday, 6 April. Schools will reopen to students and staff on Monday, 20 April 2020 unless health authorities advise otherwise.
During the period 30 March to 3 April, schools will continue to provide a program of care and supervision for children of frontline workers.
The Department’s new learning@home website provides teaching and learning resources for students at home.
We have adjusted our routines and activities to ensure we fall below 100 inside. Over the weekend (14-15th March 2020), the National Cabinet met to determine the next steps in the response to the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID – 19). The Director General of Education has provided guidelines to schools to reduce non-essential groups of students and staff of 500 or greater.
We commenced the implementation of a number of changes today and have updated future events as follows:
This has meant a large number of cancellations and changes to school events and operations. These are in effect whilst the restrictions remain in place.
Further changes and restrictions may occur. Please check back for the most up to date information.
COVID-19 A Special Message from the Principal for Parents and Caregivers
Dear Parents & Caregivers
I am writing to further update you on the changing situation in response to COVID-19.
As you would be aware, the Australian Government has announced that all organised, non-essential mass gatherings attended by more than 500 people must be cancelled from Monday 16 March 2020.
While the announcement was very clear this does not apply to schools, and that there is no need for mass school closures, it does include activities such as school fetes, fairs, concerts and the like where they involve more than 500 people.
Our school is in the process of reviewing our forward activity schedule and will postpone our participation in any activities that meet this criteria until further notice.
As our response to COVID-19 is all about containment, I continue to ask all families to pay extra attention to health and hygiene measures employed at home with your children, particularly the use of soap and, if soap is not available, hand sanitiser. You can be assured we are reinforcing this message at school.
These directions are all about supporting a national effort to contain and slow the spread of COVID-19. Each one of us, and our school, play a vital role in this effort and I ask for your continued support in this containment effort. Students must not attend school if they are unwell.
I also draw your attention to the Australian Government’s announcement that all people arriving in Australia must now self-isolate for 14 days on their arrival back to Australia. The Department of Education banned all staff and student international school travel last week – this ban now also includes any travel to New Zealand.
Continuity of Teaching and Learning
As the COVID-19 situation evolves, our school continues to prepare for continuity of learning and teaching.
The Department of Education has many resources available to us and our teachers will seek to minimise any disruption to student learning should our school be impacted by the virus.
As we have already seen across the world, this situation is likely to continue for some time and is evolving. As such, as a school and as a community, we must all prepare over the short, medium and long term.
I ask that you continue to take all necessary local actions to support your child’s, and the school’s, health and hygiene and act in a protective and preventative manner to help limit the spread of coronavirus.
I will continue to provide communication as Australia’s response to COVID-19 evolves. Thank you for your vigilance in helping us manage this public health issue.
Coronavirus latest advice
Student health and wellbeing
Full School and Sector Assemblies
NAPLAN for Years 3 and 5 in 2020
RI Lessons (from 23 March)
Easter Bonnet Parade
Yr 6 Beach Day
Term 1 Gala Day Sports (rescheduled to Term 4)
Full school ANZAC Day commemoration (commemorated in classrooms)
All representative sport including district, regional, state, national and internationally
All camps planned for after 20 March including Year 3 Sleepover, Yr 4 Camp, Yr 5 Camp, Yr 6 Camp and Choir and Instrumental Music Camps are required to be cancelled or rescheduled
Prep ‘All Families are Special’ incursion
Cross Country postponed to Term 2 and possibly modified
School Photos postponed to the 28-29 July
Going ahead with modifications
Staggered lunch time play areas to limit numbers in the one location
Poetry Competition (without an audience)
Gold Dojo Celebrations modified to reduce size of groups
Before school supervision at the tuckshop - we will monitor and split the group if the numbers approach 500. If this is needed a group will also be supervised in the Year 1 lunch area.
National Day of Action Against Bullying and Violence- no large group session
Students who are unwell
We need to keep everyone healthy at this time. If your student is unwell or experiencing flu like symptoms, please keep them at home and contact the school.
Continuity of Learning
We have been requested by the government to prepare for a possible school closure. Our teachers are ready with on-line learning programs to ensure continuity of learning should the school be asked to shut down at any stage.
These decisions are made by Queensland Health and the government.
The school has a plan to ensure the continuity of learning for students should the school have to close during the school term.
If students are absent due to self-isolation and the school is open, parents will be able to access a suite of learning at https://education.qld.gov.au/curriculum/learning-at-home .
This should be available from 23 March 2020.
We are in exceptional times. We dedicate ourselves to our work for students and these changes and events are difficult for everyone.
Thank you for your support and understanding, it is appreciated.
Coomera Springs State School