07 Sep Update Tues 7 Sept:
Kia ora katou katoa,
We are really looking forward to welcoming everyone back onsite on Thursday morning.
At Alert Level 2 there is low risk of community transmission and it provides us with a lot more opportunities to engage and connect with others. However, there are some public health requirements we all need to follow. Our Mercy value of whakaute asks us to show respect for others. Please do continue to monitor your health and do not send your daughters to school if they are not well, and please seek advice about getting a COVID test. We encourage families to follow the public health messaging to get eligible family members over 12 years of age vaccinated.
For us, all the required safety precautions for Alert Level 2 will be in place which include following all the recommendations from the public health experts. This means we will regularly clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces, encourage everyone to frequently wash their hands and cough and sneeze into their elbow. While physical distancing is not a requirement in schools, we will be doing our best to keep students from congregating in very large numbers and keeping spaces well-ventilated.
While face coverings are not required to be worn in schools, the Director General of Health has strongly recommended that children 12 years and older wear a face covering at school to align with the requirements when out and about and indoor public places. We follow the Director General of Health’s advice and strongly recommend students do make the choice to wear a mask indoors. We expect they will want to put up with the personal inconvenience of doing so, in order to support others in the Villa community. We do have a number of medically vulnerable, partially vaccinated, or unvaccinated students and staff. Also, many students and staff will have medically vulnerable people in their families. So, while as a College we want students to wear masks indoors, we do appreciate there will be differences of view about the use of face coverings. The decision to wear a face covering is up to students and whānau, and whatever your decision it will be respected.
We look forward in the days to come to being able to confirm more details about events and activities and being able to share them with students and families. My email on Friday 3 September contained information about changes to upcoming College events. Please always check the College Calendar for the latest information about events.
On return to school this Thursday we ask students to wear mufti, which involves wearing something yellow in support of “R U OK Day.” The College Leaders will make it a fun lunchtime environment on the Kia Toa lawn and throughout the day we ask that people check in with each other as we all adjust to the return to on site learning. There is no expectation that students pay to wear yellow themed mufti, but those who would like to donate towards supporting mental health can do so at the Main Office at any stage of the day.
For the rest of Term 3, students can opt to wear full Winter or Summer uniform. On Monday 13 September we have College photos for all Sporting, Cultural, Service and Academic groups. We ask that all students wear Summer uniform on this day, if possible.
We are looking forward to welcoming the students back on Thursday morning, bright and cheerful, choosing to wear masks indoors to support their community, and wearing as much yellow as they can.
Please don’t hesitate to contact any of us in Senior Leadership if there is something you need assistance with. Look forward to welcoming students back on Thursday.
Acting Principal (Term 3, 2021)