School will reopen for all students from the 1st of September in whatever format makes it as safe as possible, given our circumstances.
While everyone wants schools to operate as normally as possible from the end of August this year, it is recognised by all that it will be a different environment to how schools operated in March of this year.
Physical distancing, much less interaction between classes and class groups, staggered breaks and lunch times and a lot of flexibility within schools to maximise school spaces (including the use of our PE Halls ) will be a feature.
Recognising that there will a broad range of responses when the school community go back to school, ranging from children and their parents being happy and relieved to get back to school to some children being fearful and nervous, there will be specific emphasis on the well-being of the school community and our students and pupils as schools navigate through the reopening process. Specific supports will be also be available for those children who struggle to come back to school, vulnerable groups and those children who may experience loss, grief and bereavement during the period of school closure.
A significant cultural shift in the behaviours of students, their families and staff is expected with each playing their roles in keeping the virus out of their school by ensuring
- those who have symptoms or suspect they have the virus stay out of school,
- by maintaining best practice in terms of hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette in school, and
- as well as by minimising social contacts and respecting physical distancing practices.
As part of the school re-opening process, extensive communication by the school with the school community on the specific arrangements that will apply in the school is expected to support their cultural shift.
Reopening our schools is not just a matter of achieving a certain minimum physical distancing. It is also about getting students re-engaged fully with learning, socialising with their peers, and for some preparing for examinations, for others transitioning to school life or a different level in terms of moving from primary to post-primary. Students will need the support of their families, teachers and school staff in readjusting to school life and physical learning environments again.
School communities will rise to this challenge, and the key themes of the Public Health Advice necessary to keep us all safe will permeate throughout the school community, with everyone:
Applying common sense,
Adopting a balanced approach,
Doing everything practical to avoid the introduction of COVID-19 into the school,
Being Aware of of what we can all do to protect ourselves and each other, of how to recognise and report the symptoms of COVID-19, and of the need to stay at home if we feel unwell, and continuing to observe physical distancing, good hand hygiene and good respiratory etiquette.
Please see below a link to a letter from the Minister of Education to all Parents
Details of how Scoil Mhuire na mBuachaillí will reopen and all the procedures etc will be sent to all Parents as soon as possible.