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From the Principal 22/10/21

Dear Parents, Caregivers and Students

We are looking forward to welcoming Year 11, Year 12 and Year 13 students back to school from Tuesday 26 October. We are working to put in place arrangements that exceed the public health regulations, and support everyone in our community to be safe. Students and staff on-site for the Cambridge exams and bubble school have been extremely careful about the health and safety requirements, and very respectful of each other’s personal space. I have every confidence that will continue next week.

In making school safe, it’s important everybody continues to play their part. The vast majority of our staff are fully vaccinated, as well as many of our students. We will be inviting parents to share vaccination details with us over the next few days. Vaccination is just one of the ways to protect ourselves from COVID-19. Please can parents and caregivers carefully discuss the Public Health requirements on the attached page with your children, and emphasise the importance of every person in our community taking responsibility for health and safety.

From Tuesday the primary focus for teachers will be classroom teaching for seniors, and continuing Distance Learning for Year 9 and Year 10 students. Senior students who are not in class next week may be able to access some of the learning materials through Teams, but teachers will not be able to interact with them in the same way that they have done over recent weeks.

NCEA students will resume normal lessons, with a focus on completing internal assessments and preparing for exams. In the next few weeks teachers are likely to ask students to do practice exam questions, but there will not be any ‘formal assessments’ for the first few days that students are back in class.

From Tuesday, Cambridge students will no longer need to do exams in bubbles, and most exams will be in D and E block. For classes who have not yet finished their exams, Cambridge teachers will be timetabled for their usual lessons next week. Students may choose to come to school to connect with their teacher and classmates in ‘tutorial style’ lessons. In the main, Cambridge students are on study leave, and there is no requirement to attend lessons unless they choose to do so.

Year 9 and Year 10 students will continue with Distance Learning, although teachers will only be available on-line during your scheduled lesson times. Home Room teachers will also maintain contact with students and are likely to schedule a meeting on Tuesday. For families with no appropriate carer at home, and no other option to supervise Year 9 and Year 10 students, we will look forward to seeing your child at school next week. If your child needs to attend school it is important to inform the relevant Deputy Principal, to help us determine which students will need to be at school under Alert Level 3, and to plan for their supervision.

Year 9 Mrs McNaughton

Year 10 Ms Joynes

Additional NCEA Supports

In regards to additional NCEA supports for students this year, information can be found at Additional NCEA changes for Auckland students » NZQA and Unexpected Event Grades for Auckland, Waikato and Northland students » NZQA. Students will be expected to attend exams where possible, and students in regions who cannot attend an exam because of a specific COVID-19 disruption will receive their Unexpected Event Grade. It is important for students to understand that to access the additional credits and/or Unexpected Event Grades, they have to complete the work and assessments set by their teachers for each separate Achievement Standard. Unexpected Event Grades are only given for external assessments (exams).

We hope that our canteen will be able to offer a limited service next week, however, guidelines around this are not published yet. Please ensure that students have enough food for the day on Tuesday. At Alert Level 3 our water fountains are turned off, other than to refill bottles. Students should bring a water bottle with them to school.

We expect all school buses to be running as usual next week. Students must wear face coverings on their journey to school, whether that is on public transport, school transport or by foot.

Prior to returning on Tuesday, students should check with their teachers if they need to bring any particular work or materials with them to school. Students who have been working on laptops would be advised to bring their device to school (in an appropriate case) so that work done through Distance Learning can be easily accessed. Home Room time on Tuesday will start at 8.50am.

All students on site must wear full school uniform, with the addition of a mask. The College Shop will be open from 8.30am on Tuesday morning, and have a supply of masks for sale. Parents should not visit the College Shop whilst we are at Alert Level 3, and should only come to Reception if essential and by appointment (e.g. to collect an unwell child).

We look forward to seeing many students back at school next week, and continuing Distance Learning with Year 9 and Year 10.

Best wishes for the long weekend,

Lyndy Watkinson PRINCIPAL

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