Movement of teaching to Level 3

Kia ora koutou e te whanau
Today I want to give a big shout out to you all. We have seen demonstrated over the past few weeks, many examples of how whanau have pulled together to provide a safe, healthy, happy and productive for each other. The ability to respond in multiple ways, that we have never been asked to before, shows the resilience, grit and determination of our community.
We have often heard throughout this Covid – 19 crisis that together we will get through this, and it is proving to be the case.
When I met with teachers on Friday to discuss our next steps for moving to Level Three, we had an opportunity to reflect on what some of the positives had been over the past few weeks. Almost without exception, the staff mentioned how privileged we have been to have been invited into your homes, albeit remotely, to work alongside you and your child. We
have met family members that we didn’t know existed, toured kids bedrooms, kitchens and lounges. The feeling was that we have strengthened the relationships that are so important to us. I don’t know how many of you want to do our jobs, however I am seeing many great examples of parents and grandparents, as teachers. This is not only limited to the school
work, it also includes the many tasks and activities that you have created to engage and interact with your kids.
There have of course been challenges. Communication and engagement are among them. We do not want to add any pressure or stress during this time, however we do want you to know that we will continue to reach out and be there for you if further support is required. On Wednesday school will reopen for the children of those people who need to return to
work. Like most other communities throughout NZ you have listened to the Government and heeded the call to stay at home if you can. We have a small number of children who need to be at school this week. I can assure you that these children will be safe and well cared for.  The small number gives us the opportunity to ensure our health and safety systems are robust, before we prepare to welcome you all back in the not too distant
future.
I want to also acknowledge the commitment of the Avalon School staff during this time.  Although “school holidays” have fallen during this time, they have not had a break. They were given only a couple of days to move to “online and distant learning”. This type of change to the way we teach would have taken months, if not years to implement effectively. This means that we have been learning on the job! We are under no illusion that
we have this nailed, however I know that every single one of my staff have worked every day from the start of the lockdown period to support you and the kids through this time. We’re not through it yet and as we adjust to the next stage of our journey to “normality” you can be rest assured that the health, wellbeing and education of your kids are at the forefront of our actions. As always, I am available to be contacted by email d.winnie@avalon.school.nz or by cellphone on 0272717119.
Arohanui
Dirk

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