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Coronavirus updates

Please follow guidelines for Distance and Hybrid Learning outlined on the Primary and Secondary School pages.

For archived messages sent from the Director, or messages sent from our Secondary or Primary Principals, please refer to the Green Buttons on the side of your computer, or at the bottom of your mobile phone.

Friday, 8 May 2020

Dear Parents and Guardians,

Germany is slowly coming out of its lockdown and the local ministry of education has informed us of the regulations for bringing more students back to school, effective from next week until the end of the school year. 

We plan to start bringing more classes back on campus under these new regulations on Wednesday, 13 May.  It will not be regular school as we have known it in the past and there will still be a mixture of face to face teaching and distance learning. The regulations issued by the local ministry of education as well as our BIS concept have been designed to give safety and student well-being the highest priority. 

The new regulations for Early Learning are due to come out today. 

As you know, we have had Grades 5, 10 and 11 back for the last week and it has generally gone well and our students have acted responsibly. 

Schools are only allowed to open in the mornings with a limited number of classes on campus at any one time. 

Classes have to be kept as separate learning groups, using the same room and students the same table each day.

In Primary School, Grade 5 will continue to come in every day. Grades 1 – 4 will come back once a week on different days. In Secondary School, Grades 10 and 11 will continue to come back to school every day and two other grades will be able to come back every other day on a rotation, so if your son or daughter is in Grades 6 to 9, he/she will come to school every other day. 

In Secondary we will be creating a new schedule and focusing on the core subjects. 

Our re-integration concept for both Primary and Secondary, including which classes come back on which days, has to be approved by the Works Council before it can be finalized. You will receive final details from the relevant Principals as to which classes will return on which days and what the schedule will look like early next week. 

Mr. Tragert is offering a Parent Principal Forum online for parents from Grades 6 – 9 on Tuesday, 12 May from 17:00-18:00.

Mr. Derek is offering a Parent Principal Forum for parents from Grades 1 – 4 on Tuesday to answer questions you may have: Grades 1-2, 18:00-18:30  &  Grades 3-4, 18:45-19:15

Under German law, students have an obligation to come to school. Exceptions are included in our updated rules for students, which are attached to this mail. We would appreciate it if you could go through these rules with your sons and daughters and emphasise the importance of maintaining social distancing within school and on the way to and back from school. We will of course be going through an orientation with the students on safety expectations when they return. 

I cannot thank you enough for your support over the past weeks as we have dealt with this pandemic, while ensuring that our students continue to learn. 

I wish you all a wonderful weekend.

Pat Baier​

 
Below we have also gathered resources in both English and German to stay abreast of latest news updates both globally and in the region.
 
Rules for Students on Campus during the Coronavirus Reopening

Hybrid Learning

Rules for Students on Campus during the Coronavirus Reopening (updated 8 May 2020)

Although certain grades are on Campus, this is not considered “normal” school. For the health and safety of all our community, the following rules must be observed.

  • A student with a cold, a temperature, or any sign of illness must not enter the school campus.
  • A student living in the same household as someone with Covid-19 symptoms must not enter the school campus.
  • A student with any of the following must not enter the school campus:
    • Cardiovascular diseases requiring therapy (e.g. coronary heart disease, high blood pressure)
    • Lung diseases (e.g. COPD, bronchial asthma)
    • Chronic liver disease
    • Kidney disease
    • Oncological diseases
    • Diabetes mellitus
    • Weakened immune system (e.g. due to a disease that is associated with an immune deficiency or by taking medication that can influence and reduce the immune defence, such as cortisone)

General Rules

  • All students must keep 1.5 metre distance from all other people.
  • Face masks must be worn at all times when walking in public areas. They do not have to be worn in the classroom while sitting at the desk. We encourage students to bring their own face masks to school, but do have face masks available. 
  • Students must not touch other people.
  • Cough and sneezing etiquette must be adhered to, for example into elbows.

Entering and Exiting the Campus

  • Primary Students must only enter and exit through the Waves entrance
  • Grade 11 students must only enter and exit through the main Agora entrance.
  • Grade 10 students enter and exit through the green gate between the Crest and the Agora and enter the building using the Agora entrance opposite the cafeteria.
  • Students are to enter the school individually, keeping 1.5 metre distance.
  • Upon entering the campus each student must use the hand sanitizer.
  • Students must go straight to their designated study area after sanitizing their hands.

In the Building

  • The one-way markings in the hallways and stairways must be followed, each person keeping 1.5 distance.
  • Students are only to use the stairways and hallways in single file.
  • There must be no running along the hallways or on the stairs.
  • Students must only use the designated bathrooms.
  • Only one student at a time is allowed to use the designated bathrooms.
  • Students must wash their hands after using the bathroom.
  • Only one student at a time is allowed to use the elevator.

Classrooms

  • Students must only sit at their designated desk.
  • Students must keep a 1.5 metre distance between each other and their teacher.
  • Students must only use their own laptop/iPad.
  • Students must not share materials.
  • Only one student at a time is allowed to leave the classroom.
  • Students must bring headphones to school with them.
  • All digital devices must be fully charged when students come to school.

Break Times

  • Students must keep the 1.5-metre distance during break times.
  • Students must only use the designated break areas.
  • Students are not to play soccer, basketball or any contact sports during breaks.
  • Playground equipment will not be handed out.
  • The zipline and playground apparatus are not to be used.
  • Hands must be sanitized after break time and before entering the classroom.

Food

  • The cafeteria will not be open. Students must bring their own snacks and drinks from home.
  • These snacks and drinks must not be shared.
  • Snacks must be consumed in the break areas.
  • Water is allowed in the classrooms.

Media Centre

  • The Media Centre will be open from 10:00 to 12:00 from Monday to Friday.
  • No more than 5 students are allowed into the Media Centre at one time.
  • Returned books must be put into the box outside the Media Centre.
  • Grade 12 students will receive instructions on how and when to return school materials.
  • When checking out a book(s), each student must place the book(s) on the designated table with their identity card.
  • Only one student may leave the classroom at a time to go to the Media Centre.

Any student who does not adhere to these rules will be sent home

and only allowed back on campus at the relevant Principal’s discretion.

Hybrid Learning - Campus Rules for Students
(this is the same set of rules in a downloadeable format)

Public Transport Travel Rules and Guidelines

Public Transport Travel Rules and Guidelines

Currently, masks are compulsory when travelling to school using public transport. It is recommended that you wear a community mask, which are simple mouth and nose masks, such as self-sewn masks made of cotton. These have to be procured or produced by each student or family and will not be provided by school.

Please consider whether you really have to use the OPNV/ public transport or whether you can safely travel to school on foot or by bicycle.

Try to avoid crowds when entering and leaving the bus, train or tram and make sure that you keep your distance even at bus, train and tram stops. If separate boarding and alighting is not possible, the following applies: first let the passengers alight with sufficient distance and then board. It there are several students entering at one time please take your seats in an orderly fashion - start at the rear of the vehicle and sit on the window seats all the way to the front.

If possible, always leave at least one seat free between passengers, even if you wear a community mask. Avoid conversations with other people whilst travelling.

When using public transport, do not board when the corona-conditioned maximum capacity has been reached. If it is not possible to sit in a seat without being directly next to another traveller please wait for the next bus, train or tram.

Take your seat before the vehicle departs and do not leave your seat until you have reached your destination to avoid unnecessary contact with handrails and handles.

Wearing gloves can be helpful.

Please follow the instructions of the operating personnel such as the driver or ticket collector.

Only operate the door opening buttons in public transport if the door does not open automatically.

Do not eat or drink anything on public transport.

How are the guidelines for my child and me during Distance Learning?

Instructions for distance learning were sent in an email to all families the evening of Friday, 6 March 2020. You can also access it below:

The above outlines our contingency plans to provide learning to our students during the time of closure. We believe this set of tools will be able to support student learning and communication at home during the time of closure and keep our students in line to resume classroom learning as soon as school resumes. 

Someone in my family feels sick: What do I need to do?

 

* Stay at home if someone in your household has a fever above 37.5C and / or present flu-like or even mild cold-like symptoms.
 Symptoms may include a cough, malaise, sore throat, shortness of breath, sometimes also stuffy nose, vomiting/ diarrhea, according to the Robert-Koch-Institut (RKI)

* Advice from the German Ministry of Health focuses on limiting the exposure of sick people to everyone else. If symptoms remain mild, people are advised to stay at home and manage the symptoms.
Members of the household should take all possible measure to avoid the spread of disease.

* If you have concerns, first telephone your family doctor and arrange a telephone appointment.

* Do not just visit a doctor's practice or go to the emergency room.

* There is a hotline for Bonn residents open 8:00 - 20:00 for those concerned or needing advice. This can be reached by calling tel 0228-7175

* People are asked to ONLY dial 110 or 112 in real emergencies outside of business hours.

 

How to talk to my child about the virus

 

Our Counselling Team provided staff with guidance notes. You too may find these helpful in your discussions:

 

A few facts about the virus

  • “Corona” is Latin for crown. When viewed under a microscope, the virus looks like a crown with spikes ending in little blobs.
  • A lot of the symptoms of the virus are similar to the flu, which you might have had before, such as dry itchy cough, fever and hard to breathe.
  • Most people who became sick with this virus have had a mild case.
  • There are not many cases in children and teenagers. If kids do get this virus, it tends to be very mild.
  • People who are much older or who already have health problems are more likely to get sick with Corona virus.
  • If anyone gets sick and feels like they might have Coronavirus, they should immediately call their doctors to get help.
  • Medical professionals are tracking the disease very carefully and doing all that they can to try to make sure it doesn’t spread.
  • If there is anything you might be confused or worried about, don’t be afraid to ask an
  • adult whom you trust, such as your parents, a teacher, the school nurse or a counselor.
  • How to protect yourself and your family

How to protect yourself, your family and your friends from getting sick​

  • Wash your hands often using soap and water. Good hand-washing techniques are:
     >>  Wash for at least 20 seconds (about the length of the “ABC song” or “Happy Birthday” twice)
     >>  Wash after using the bathroom and before eating
     >>  When you wash your hands, rub them well with soap and try to get between your fingers and all the way to your wrist
  • Sneeze or cough into your elbow
  • Blow your nose into a tissue, and throw it away immediately. Then wash your hands.
  • Avoid touching your face. Don’t pick your nose. Don’t touch your mouth. Don’t rub your eyes. These are places where germs enter the body.
  • It is very important to remember that this virus can affect anyone. There are cases all over the world. It doesn’t matter where you are from or where your parents come from.
  • Don’t forget there are a lot of helpers out there working to protect you. It is not your job to worry.

When answering questions, please remember:

  1. Provide ONLY verified facts.
    a. Tell the truth (don’t ignore or minimize it).
    b. Use brief and simple explanations for younger children.
    Try to strike an appropriate balance between the need for taking precautions and facts that may be alarming
    This is a serious issue but it’s not something to panic about)
    c. Expect to repeat facts.
    d. Do not give details that students do not ask for.
    e. Avoid sensationalizing or speculating.
    f. Remember that some students may be more worried about this, so please be sensitive to this fact and remind others as well.
  2. Allow students to ask questions - Let student questions guide the information shared.
  3. Let them know what is a rumor, and dispel rumors.
  4. Tell them you will give one of three responses:
    i. The facts
    ii. “I don’t know”
    iii. “Talk to your parents”
  5. Balance the information with reassurance about what is being done to keep them safe.
  6. Remember to contact the Counsellors in case a student needs more support

Notes Adapted from School Crisis Prevention and Intervention: The PREP a RE Model, by S. E. Brock et al., 2009, Bethesda, MD: National Association of School Psychologists.

Information about the virus adapted from: NPR.org

Coronavirus resources