After weeks of learning from home, thousands of Queensland students are set to head back to school tomorrow.
Kindy, prep, grade 1 and years 11 and 12 will return to classrooms full time from Monday, to resume face-to-face lessons with their teachers.
Remaining grades will go back on May 25, depending on the coronavirus curve remaining flat.
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Independent Schools Queensland Executive Director David Robertson said the staged return of students would give schools the chance to establish and fine-tune a range of operational arrangements before the potential return of all students.
“First and foremost, independent schools will be implementing processes and procedures, in line with the latest state and national health advice, to ensure the health and safety of everyone who comes onto their campuses,” Mr Robertson said.
“This will include reinforcing personal hygiene practices, reminding children and staff to say home if they are unwell, stepping up cleaning procedures, ensuring soap and sanitiser supplies, reducing student groups, staged lunch breaks, new school drop-off and pick up procedures, and reminding students to use contactless greetings.”
Mr Robertson praised staff, students and parents for rising to the challenges resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I’m sure there will be special welcomes planned and smiles all round on Monday as classrooms that have been empty for weeks fill again with the noise and chatter of students learning,” he said.
“Just as it took communities time to adjust to learning from home routines, there will also be a period of adjustment settling back into classroom life.”
Parents are also being urged to familiarise themselves with their school’s new routines, particularly for drop-off and pick-up, with parents not allowed onto school grounds.
“As a mother-of-three, I know dropping little Preppies and Year 1s off without taking them into the classroom or interacting with other parents may be a little unsettling for some families,” Qld Independent Schools Parents Network Executive Officer Justine Cirocco said.
“However, schools need the unwavering support of parents and carers to ensure things go as smoothly as possible for everyone’s collective health and wellbeing.
“Schools know their communities and families need to trust them and adhere to the specific arrangements their schools have put in place.”