COVID 19 2022 Updates

Thursday 27th January 2022

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Tēnā tātou katoa,

I hope this email finds our community well and safe during these unusual times. I want to take this opportunity to thank you all for your continued support around our RED Traffic light framework as we begin 2022. We would appreciate it if you could follow our guidelines to help protect our community as COVID is in our region.

RED Traffic Light updates

Kia Ora St Marys Whānau

Welcome back to our St Marys whānau. We are feeling very refreshed and ready to go for the 2022 year and can’t wait to welcome our community back onsite, even if it is with masks and continued restrictions. We would like to thank you in advance for supporting us as we navigate the RED traffic light system.

COVID-19 is still hanging around and there will be many things that we have to alter to accommodate having parents onsite. Please continue to be patient with us as we navigate this space. We have now moved fully into the new traffic light framework for all our school activities and events this year. You will be familiar with all the health measures we will have in place and it is good to know that at the RED setting, we are able to support everyone learning onsite.

Please read below our updates and other important information:

Ra Whanau day UPDATE, Thursday 3rd February

In keeping with the Red light system, our Ra Whanau Mai day now needs to be altered to keep in line with the number of visitors on site. We are asking families to please fill out the questionnaire below and book a phone time with their Whanau teacher. For those families that have already booked their timeslot, this will remain the same. Once you have booked your time the Whanau teacher will make contact with you by phone at that allocated time. All contact on this day will be by phone except for our new families and New Entrant children. This is so we can minimize the numbers onsite. We look forward to welcoming our New Entrant children and new children onsite, at their allocated time.

If you have any questions please email your child's Whanau teacher. We want to thank you for your understanding as we begin the school year.

Later on, in Term 1 we will have the opportunity to share your child's learning with you in a face-to-face parent meeting. We will communicate this with you in our first newsletter.

Please complete this questionnaire by Tuesday the 1st of February.

Each time slot (one per child) will be 10 minutes long and can be booked here or by going to; and using the following code: y8r6b


Limiting numbers on site is a priority at the Red Traffic Light setting. We request that only new families and families of new entrant students enter the school grounds and drop off their children at the classroom door on their first day. All other parents and families please do not come on-site unless it is absolutely necessary. In this instance, you will need to go to the office. We also ask that early pick-ups be avoided. If you do come on-site you must wear a mask and scan in, please. This is exactly the same as last year so we can minimize the number of people on site.

Events and activities

Large huis and gatherings especially when indoors continue to be one of the riskier activities we can undertake. We have therefore reviewed all our events and activities for the upcoming term to ensure we meet the health guidance for Red. Our Liturgies, Masses, and celebration Huis will be done online and shared with Whanau classes and our community. We will communicate any other alterations as required.


Providing good old-fashioned fresh air remains the most important thing we can do in our learning spaces to minimise risk for students.

Face coverings

The Government has mandated the wearing of masks at schools indoors for all students in Year 4 and up. This means that masks are compulsory when we are inside. We are asking that parents provide masks for their children and that they wear them correctly.

The school will have a supply of disposable masks if they have forgotten or have lost their own. We urge you as families to support us and provide your child with a mask that fits them and is comfortable. If your child has a mask exemption we ask that you provide a copy to us.

Children in other year levels will be supported if they choose to wear face coverings also. All students catching buses (both the school bus and public transport) will be required to wear a mask.

Please note that whether you agree with mask-wearing or not, the Ministry has mandated this for all schools. Please support us by explaining to your child that they must comply with this request and provide them with a comfortable mask to wear indoors at school.

All staff will be wearing face coverings. We are aware that staff wearing face coverings may have an impact on some students particularly those with hearing impairments. For those students, their teachers will have a process in place.

Here is a link to face mask exemptions, exemption card

Managing cases in our school

We have a good contact tracing system in place so that if there is a confirmed case who has been at school while infectious, we can quickly identify who was a close contact of that person. We will then advise those contacts of what they need to do as soon as possible.

In the event of your child being unwell or presenting with cold/flu symptoms, we ask that you please keep that home and contact the school to advise. If your child presents with these symptoms while at school, you will be contacted to come and collect them immediately. Thank you for your support with this.

Vaccination for 5-11 yr olds

As you will be aware from the media, vaccinations have been approved and encouraged by the Ministry of Health for 5-11yr olds. This means parents can access vaccinations for their children 5 and up. Access to these vaccinations is through centers and businesses in our area. COVID vaccinations are not available on our site.

We understand and respect each families right to vaccinate their children so staff are been asked to simply explain to children if asked that it is the personal choice of the family and the decision is to be respected.


Good hygiene remains a key element in the spread of COVID. We will continue to make sure our children have excellent coughing and sneezing etiquette and we would appreciate your support with this as well. We will be regularly cleaning and hand sanitizer and tissues will be available to support good practices.

Food and Water

Everyone needs to bring their own lunch. No shared lunches will be happening at this time. Every child is required to bring a drink bottle and we can fill them up during the day.

Physical Distancing

Physical distancing is a good precaution to help prevent the spread of this disease. Where possible within the school environment we will endeavour to adhere and we ask that parents who need to come onsite physical distance. Thank you in advance.

Getting ready to return to school

The Ministry of Education has some helpful information on their Parents and whanau website to help our Tamariki in getting back to school.

Thank you for your continued support as we navigate through these challenging times. He waka eke noa, we are all in this together.

We are also here to help. Please get in touch if you have any concerns.

Looking forward to seeing you all next week.

Nga Mihi

St Marys Team

If you can please make sure all your contact details are up to date so we can get in touch if needed. Please email Theresa in the office to update your details.