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Principal's Welcome 

Friday, 20th March 2020

Kia ora tātou,

Where to begin?

First by thanking staff for their professionalism and efforts to support students and whānau, and maintain student learning at the same time. The school is receiving multiple announcements from the Government, as well as other agencies (e.g. sports bodies) and processing these calmly and promptly.

I also greatly appreciate the support and patience from you, our community.  This is a health crisis on a scale that I’ve never experienced.

Thirdly, I acknowledge the work of authorities such as the Auckland Regional Public Health Service who are doing excellent work to guide us through this crisis.

It’s serious, and we’re all in this together.

My first priority is to best protect the health and safety of students and staff.  That underpins many of the decisions that we’re having to make.

My second priority is to keep people informed – colleagues, staff, whānau and students.  I believe clear and accurate information is an important way to promote calm.  Note … I’ve already corrected one mistake (the coronavirus is not a new form of influenza as I stated in the student resource).  Back to year 11 science for me!  The good news is that the Government’s information is getting clearer by the day (e.g. www.covid19.govt.nz).

My third priority is to continue with as much normality as possible. We want learning and other school activities to continue as much, and for as long as possible.

Unfortunately, the first priority means that it is not possible to continue some school activities.  We are working through each activity (e.g. trips, sports) on a case-by-case basis.  I have provided more information below about the latest postponements and cancellations.

As stated on my previous communication, if your child shows signs of illness such as coughs and colds, please keep them at home.  Colds and flus are common in schools and by staying away, seeking medical attention and practicing good hygiene, we can all keep any spread of illness to a minimum.

That said, if your child is not displaying symptoms they should be at school.  Please contact your child’s Dean or Assistant Dean if you have any questions or concerns.

If you have any specific concerns about COVID-19, contact your GP or Healthline.  Contact details are:

  • Healthline                                      0800 358 5453
  • Government website                   www.covid19.govt.nz
  • ARPHS website                            www.arphs.health.nz

I had intended to say a few words about my departure to Nelson, but at this moment our focus needs to be on student and staff wellbeing. 

Thanks again for your patience and support.  This is going to be a long ride.

ngā mihi nui, noho ora mai … warm greetings and stay well.

 

Richard Dykes

Principal

 

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