July 20th Extended Lockdown letter from Mrs Clydesdale

Dear Parent/Carer

COVID-19: School update following announcement of extended lockdown.

Well, here we are moving into week two of this snap lockdown. Following Premier Daniel Andrew’s announcement today the lockdown is clearly going to continue for another week and we hope that is enough time to break the COVID circuit!

Since COVID arrived in our lives in 2020 we have all experienced the challenges of adjusting to this new reality of being at home twenty-four seven for possibly weeks at a time.

One of the big challenges we heard from families is trying to home educate. With the pressure of submitting learning tasks sent by teachers and trying to ensure your child does not fall behind in their school work is a huge commitment from parents.

This is, of course, particularly difficult for parents working from home.

It is understandable that for older children who have exams coming up, regular school work continues. However, we are also of the view that for this mini-lockdown, it may be an unnecessary pressure for parents to focus solely on school work.

Many parents are feeling under pressure that if they do not do their bit and keep their child on track with school work they are letting them down. Many of you are also worried that when your child returns to school they are going to be behind.

The task for us educationalists is to help children and families find a way through this snap lockdown period and not exacerbate mental health worries and increase the stress on parents who are often trying to juggle childcare and work.

Managing children’s anxieties about why the world outside no longer feels safe is a vital task for parents at this time. 

Being able to play and potter around at home doing day-to-day things together should never be underestimated as they are the building blocks by which we learn to learn – the foundations of all our learning.

This week, feel free to put down the school books for a day or so, when your child or you, feel overwhelmed. Let your class teacher know that you will not be submitting learning tasks that day due to learning supplementary life skills.

These skills might include: hanging out the washing, cleaning, cooking, playing in the garden (even on days such as today – Gum boots, coats, gloves and make mud pies!) teddy bear picnics and singing together, practising production song! Play Eye Spy, hide and seek, and make forts!

These tasks and games may not work for every child, but choose a fun activity that suits your family, and enjoy teaching your child how to be happy, how to play and most importantly how to be in a positive relationship with you.

Class teachers will continue to check in with you and your children to offer support and ensure everyone is okay.

We understand how important it is to remain engaged with class teachers and classmates during this time and hope everyone remains well connected and supported throughout this next week.

For those families who love to complete all learning tasks every day, we applaud you and welcome your submissions.

Teachers will provide feedback to support individual student improvement.

We hope to see all our kids back to onsite learning next Wednesday morning.

Please take care of yourselves and each other.

Tina Clydesdale