Friday 3 April 2020
Good Afternoon All,
As we break for the Easter I recall past years when there would be a buzz of excitement in the air.
‘No School, for 2 weeks, no pesky teachers – freedom!’ – the cry rang out.
Controlling the students as they lined up at the end of the day for Bus Lines can be challenging enough, trying to control them on the day before a holiday … well let’s just say, many eyes were thrown to heaven. The buses and vans would pull away and then the silence.
A school without the students is not a happy place. We do miss all the children.
Remember we are in this for the long haul, ‘A Marathon, not a Sprint’.
You will have received many links, reviews, suggestions on distance learning. You will, like all of us, have had the frustrations of adjusting to the ‘new reality’.
We are, in terms of working days, in day 13. Given that there was little or no warning that this was about to happen I believe that we have all done pretty well, teachers, parents and students are in the same boat. Some are managing better than others in these exceptional times. We have, now and then, been short tempered with one another but by far the greatest response has been empathy all around.
When a company decides to move to a more virtual scenario there will have been months of planning, discussions, costings, feedback from constituents, outside IT specialists brought in, training and workshops, market analysts, all that is needed to ensure that the company itself is ready and the clients, who also are facing a new situation, are prepared. Probably a years’ worth of preparation.
We have all been flying at breakneck speed, trying our best to ‘keep up’, not to lose out, but the good news now is that;
School Holidays = no school = no lessons= no homework = catch your breath time.’
As a staff we will be streamlining our virtual approach to distant learning. I will not give details at this point but am impressed by the way teachers are responding and the progress we have been making.
Over the break take the time to review all of the demands that have sprung up around us. If you wish to research some of the links sent by teachers, please do. Take time to look at some of the more fun looking ones. Take the time to read some of the articles on schooling, mental health, dealing with the current situation that have been selected by staff and we feel are pertinent to St Edward’s College.
Third term fees
You should all have received an announcement today on this topic. The purpose of the announcement is to keep you informed regarding fees for the Trinity Term. Check ‘Announcements’ on MySchool. The letter brings you up to speed with the current situation as it stands today.
‘…Once our application is successful, the income from this scheme will be passed on in its entirety to parents…’
End of Year assessment
Over the break we will be looking into the above and all of the other aspects of how we need to adjust to not being back for the remainder of the academic year. To date we have been dealing with the past 3 weeks! As I know you all have.
Grazzi Hafna lil Kulhadd!
Finally, many sincere thanks to the overwhelming positive and supportive response we have had from you all, (well, most of you …).
Despite your own memories and what some of your children tell you teachers are human too. They have the same concerns and worries, the same responsibilities at home with children, parents, perhaps a spouse who is also working from home. Challenges in coping with IT without specific training, (which we will be given in a structured manner over the break). Like you some teachers are more IT savvy than others and can solve the different issues that face them.
Planning a good lesson is challenging, planning a lesson on-line is extra challenging and takes hours more work that the amount of time when the lesson is presented.
We are all, no matter what we think, on a steep learning curve, we will get to the end of this together.
Happy Easter one and all.
Mr Nollaig Mac an Bhaird