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School Reopening Update

29 July 2020

Our Principal, Patrick Horne writes an update regarding school reopening, and requests that parents complete a short questionnaire to help us plan for the first few weeks back.

  • Patrick Horne

Returning to School
Following the ADEK survey of parents back in June, we know that the majority of families want their children to come back to school, but there are a few who wish to keep their children at home for a little longer. We also appreciate that there may be some cases where families may be in quarantine for various reasons.
In the questionnaire we are asking you to please identify which of your children will be attending in Week 1 (30th August - 3rd September) and Week 2 (6th - 10th September) of Term 1, so we can know the exact numbers to expect in school. 
Our aim is for there to be a full opening of the school and to enable as many students as possible to return. We will use additional classroom space and additional adults where needed to maintain the requirements for social distancing. Should it turn out not to be possible to get a full class or year group into school safely, we will operate a rotation system so students perhaps attend 4 days out of 5 for example. We will of course advise all families of the exact situation for their children following the responses to the questionnaire.
Virtual Learning
There will be virtual learning provision for any students who are not attending school in person. Now that the teachers will also be teaching face-to-face during the day I am sure you will appreciate that this cannot be the same provision as last term when all students were at home. As ever though, we will do our best for every child and still have high expectations for all students be they at home or in school.
The guidance from ADEK is that buses must not exceed 50% of occupancy which means they will not be able to accommodate the usual numbers. From a safety point of view we would strongly encourage parents to use cars to bring their children to school. This is another way to help minimise the contact between students and particularly those from different year groups.

Although we would greatly prefer it if people could use their own transport we do fully understand this is not always possible. We will therefore still be providing bus services for those who need it so they can attend school, although places will be limited. Bus fees will of course only be charged to those who use the service.

If you choose not to use the bus service initially it will be possible to opt back in later in the term.
Looking Ahead
At present we are making plans for the initial few weeks of term. During August we will continue to write to you with more details regarding how school will work and all the safety measures in place for the students, staff and parents.
Please do remain aware that the situation does change depending on the numbers of COVID cases, and advice from the authorities is amended. It is quite possible therefore that the situation in October/November will be different to August/September. If we are patient and work together then hopefully we will start heading back towards a more normal school routine, my thanks to all families for their support with this.
Our best wishes to everyone in the BISAD community for a relaxing Eid break ahead. Please do complete the questionnaire which can be found by clicking this link. 
Kind regards,
Patrick Horne