Message to parents

11th Aug 2020

Message from Chris

Dear Parents and Caregivers,


I want to welcome you back to the new school year and extend a further warm welcome to new families as they join us for 2020-21.


As a team here at Glenealy we are excited to be back, whilst recognising that this is the most unusual start to a term. The current circumstances here in Hong Kong and in many places across the world are far from ideal for our return to school. I am sure parents will join us in our hope for a safe return to ‘on site’ learning as soon as possible. It is important that we recognise the current circumstances for parents, children and staff are challenging. We are however resolved to do our best to support children to make progress and enjoy their learning over the coming weeks, so they make the best start to the year given the circumstances.

The Glenealy team has been very busy over the last few days preparing for the children’s virtual return to school. We are all excited to meet the children tomorrow in their new classes.


Class teachers and our administration team have been in contact and busy organising the below:


  • Chromebook loans have begun to be collected for those who request them - more will be collected tomorrow. If you require an additional Chromebook in the home, but have not yet requested one, please contact the school office.

  • Exercise books are being collected from school. For parents who may have collected multiple books for different siblings today - please see the helpful table below which explains which exercise books are for which year groups.

  • You will have received your first Weekly Overview and welcome message from the class teacher.

  • Today you will receive your first Daily Timetable with the session times allocated for lessons ready for tomorrow.


For our new parents and families to the school we hope the ‘new joiners’ websites have been helpful, and that you have successfully set up your children’s Gmail and other accounts. Remember, if you have any questions at all about the set up please contact our tech support team at tech@glenealy.edu.hk.


Regarding our provision for distance learning this term we are making sure the blend of face to face teaching and independent learning is optimised across the day. For the start of 2020-21 we will be working with increased clarity in monitoring and checking learning as the children progress. Daily plans will have clear times within them - so we hope children can follow along with the timetable of learning each day. The learning day runs from 8:30 am to 3:00 pm, just as it does on the school site. There will also be lots of opportunity to connect via Zoom with our teaching team every day. We will further be ensuring the expectations of children’s learning are clear and they are able to be supported by their teacher during the day, and submit learning at required times.


A few points to note for the new school year:


  • Children’s face to face Zoom sessions will start at 8:30am each day. Class registration will take place at 8:30am each morning.

  • Children will have at least two extended Zoom sessions each day with their class teacher, or a combination of multiple shorter sessions during the day in the early years.

  • EAs and teachers will additionally host smaller group Zoom sessions throughout the day to check on progress and learning.

  • From Monday next week, children will take part in additional specialist Zoom sessions during the week for Mandarin, music and PE along with an assembly. Independent follow up learning will also be set from these specialist sessions.

  • We will set independent learning tasks that are monitored and submitted to the teachers. Teachers will set clear timescales for these submissions and expectations will be adjusted dependent on age.

  • Teachers and EAs are available during the day to field children’s questions and provide support if it is needed. They will monitor and support progress throughout the day.

  • We will expect children to take part in all live sessions, unless parents instruct us otherwise.

  • We expect all children to engage with the learning set, unless parents inform us of a reason why they cannot engage. We will encourage children to complete all of the learning and submit it within the time allocated.


Please note that Year 1 children have an adjusted timetable for the first couple of weeks to ensure they settle well and get to know their teacher.


We understand that parents face various challenges in the home in setting up for distance learning and we want to encourage parents to share with their class teacher if children are finding it challenging to complete the learning tasks. Teachers and EAs are ready to assist in any way they can to ensure your child gets the most out of the distance learning experience - please reach out to us if you feel there is any support needed. We are here to help as much as we can.


Getting to know your child is very important for our teachers and they will focus on this as the year begins. Later this week our teachers will write to you inviting you to share via email anything you would like to about your child that you feel is important for us to know.


In addition to our regular programme we will be providing an extra opportunity for a parent teacher conference via Zoom in the next few weeks so you can connect with the class teacher to share information about your child and to discuss the first few weeks in more detail.


We hope the information you have received so far has been helpful, and we look forward to making the most of the start to the school year tomorrow morning.


Best Regards,

Chris


Note: Exercise Book Codes

For those who have collected multiple sets of books for siblings, please see the exercise book codes for each year group below. Codes can be found at the bottom of the back cover of each book:

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