8th May 2020
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Oha atu ki te katoa,

As we approach the government decision on whether (and when) to transition to Alert Level 2, we are busy at school preparing the necessary Health and Safety documents and making the school site ready for our learners. In order to inform our decision making, I require a response from each family to confirm their personal circumstances as we move into Alert Level 2. Please complete our online survey before the government’s announcement on Monday 11th May. In doing this, you will allow our school time to plan for the return of students to classes. Please note, the Prime Minister has indicated that schools will not open until the week after any announcement of a move to Alert Level 2.

A number of our staff attended a Webinar with John Parsons about Internet Safety this week. There is an article to read in this newsletter. John outlined the requirements placed on teachers not only to protect our young people in this age of digital learning but also how to protect our teachers’ professional boundaries. The Board of Trustees is currently working on updating our Online Learning Policy in line with legal and professional advice. In general, the following principles should be considered in your own home:

  • Set your child up for success by planning their day of online learning with them

  • Normal school rules and relevant policies are in place in the online learning environment

  • Ensure you are protecting your family’s privacy by placing your child’s online learning station in a suitable environment at home

  • Be interested in your child’s work and sites they are visiting - vigilance is required

  • Ensure your child is dressed for their online meetings and seated in a suitable environment at home (e.g. not in bed, or in a closed room)

  • If your child needs to complete 1:1 sessions with teachers, ensure there is another adult present at either end of the conference, or that the session is recorded for everyone’s safety

Thank you for your assistance with these points.

Thank you to all the parents and other family members in the community who continue to act as excellent ‘guides on the side’ for our learning programmes. I’m sure we’re all wishing to be back at school soon.

He waka eke noa.

Kate Staniford,


For your information:

'The Catlins Area School Lockdown' Facebook group has been created to give everyone a helping hand during this time. You can share your experiences of 'Learning at Home', ask questions of us or each other or give support during our school closure.

There will be links, ideas and resources posted there to help. Please feel free to share things that you have found helpful.

You can find the group here: The Catlins Area School Lockdown

Contact The Catlins Area School


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The Catlins Area School · 1 Stuart Street · Owaka · Owaka, Otago 9535 · New Zealand