Welcome to the monthly update from the Northbridge International School Cambodia Parent Council, which follows their regular meeting and discussion. Here are the topics that were addressed at this month's meeting.
The Parent Council wondered what information our school uses for reference to decide the necessary actions we should take to respond to the Coronavirus.
Mr Richard informed the PC that the main information the school uses as reference is from the US Embassy in Phnom Penh, as it’s timely and updated. A group of international schools in the city also share information, and ongoing advice is given from the Nord Anglia Education regional office in Vietnam, and the global HQ in London.
Mr Richard explained that it is a difficult situation for everyone, and last week our student attendance was about 50% - however this week it has increased to around 80%.
To be responsible for all the people in the campus, the school has had to ask some students to stay away from school until they are fine to come back, and this is not an easy decision to make or take for some families.
The school will continue to make decisions according to the facts, but will also make some adjustments according to the perception, for example the MIA this week for Grade 11 was changed to have a sleepover on campus instead of travelling to Sihanoukville.
The PC also asked Mr Richard why swimming was cancelled last week, but restarted this week, and whether it’s safe to swim at this time. Mr Richard explained that the swimming training was cancelled last week because school took into account the emotional fear of the virus for everyone, but based on the filtration and purification system of the swimming pool, the chlorine could kill the bacteria and viruses. Thus swimming lessons and training began again this week.
The parents also wondered whether the swimming meet due to be held on 24 February at CIA could be postponed. Mr Richard showed his understanding, but explained that as this event is not organized by our school, he cannot change it.
The PC gave a few suggestions about the school's Learning Enrichment Activities Program (LEAP):
1. Parents hope that the school can provide some regular LEAP programs every year so that some students can participate in and study these courses consistently and more in depth. Mr Richard agreed on this and he asked the PC to survey parents on what programs would be popular. The school will then try to provide those LEAP programs if they can confirm the related instructors in the new school year.
2. The PC suggested that the school could consider providing some popular LEAP programs twice a week because learning a skill really needs a lot of practice, and some students are interested in learning them on a deeper level, just like with our swim team.
3. Feedback was given that the current tennis coaches are not experienced enough in coaching and managing kids, and requested the school look for a better alternative. Mr Richard promised to look into this.
4. The PC suggested that the school could take LEAP as the opportunity to develop some strong school teams, for example choir, drama, debate, and orchestra, and fully cultivate those teams to represent Northbridge at external events, performances and competitions.
5. Parents suggested that the school could also use LEAP as an opportunity to discover talented students and help them to develop skills in their relevant area.
Mr Richard agreed on the above points, and informed the PC that the school already had plans to do some of them in the new school year. He would have further discussions with his team on how best to improve the LEAP program.
School photos will be held from Wednesday 26 to Friday 28 February, with the option for sibling or family photos available this year. More details will be provided soon.
Lunar New Year Break
Some parents wonder whether the school could allocate the one week mid-semester break during the Lunar New Year period next year, but Mr Richard explained that in order to have the students' study process and schedule more effective, the school must distribute the whole semester's vacation equally.
Parent Coffee Morning
The next Parent Coffee Morning is on next Friday 14 February. Please mark your calendar and see you there!
The Parent Council meets 8am every first Tuesday of each month in the Hub Boardroom. If you have any important school-related topics or concerns that you would like to have discussed, feel free to join the meetings or send an e-mail with details to: email@example.com