COVID-19 is stretching many people to their limit, particularly in terms of their mental well-being. Yes, we are all running a risk and we are all concerned about the implications on our loved ones.
This extraordinary situation is exposing people’s true colours. Every day we read stories of people who are going out of their way to support others, in their professional roles and as human beings. The situation is also bringing the worse out of people – stupidity, selfishness, egoism and the most despicable behaviour imaginable.
Our school is part of the wider community. We are not isolated. We took, and are still taking all the possible precautions. But, it was not a matter of if, but when… We have know experienced the first COVID positive case at school. As expected, some people handled this well, some panicked, some went to extremes.
But what actually happens when there is a positive case at school?
- The moment we are informed of a positive case, we inform the COVID-19 School Response Team. We provide all the necessary details, including the details of all the teachers, LSEs and students in the class. We also provide as much detail about the case as possible – when did the student last attend school, were was s/he sitting, did s/he show any symptoms?
- We are committed to provide timely, open, and transparent information to all. So, the next thing we do is inform parents of students in the class affected . We also inform all other teachers, LSEs and parents of the situation while respecting privacy.
- Classrooms are thoroughly disinfected, following strict guidelines established by the Health Authorities.
- Then, we wait. At this point the case is literally out of our hands. The Health Authorities take over. They assess the case and determine whatever action may need to be taken and communicate with whoever is concerned.
This past week was not easy. We appreciate that parents had questions. We appreciate anxiety levels were at an all time high. The majority of parents expressed their solidarity and supported us throughout. We appreciate it.
Unfortunately, a few other parents have gone out of their way to fuel gossip and make all sorts of ridiculous claims. Some parents prefer to believe what they read on Facebook rather than the official information provided by the school. We would rather these parents use common sense and act responsibly.
And just to be clear, no, we will never disclose the name of a COVID positive case because we respect privacy.
In this situation we need to support each other by taking care of ourselves first. Here are some tips on looking after yourself.
You can also help us keep children safe by acting responsibly. Ignore rumours because they only make our work more difficult. Rest assured that we will provide you with whatever information we have. No news is good news. If you don’t hear anything from us, then it is because there is nothing we need to tell you. Realise that calling the school “just because” seriously affects our work. Just do the maths… We have over 400 students at school. Just imagine if every parent called the school “just to be sure”…
Please allow us to get on with our work and to focus on what is important – the children. We need this for our own mental well-being, because like everyone else, we are also affected by this situation.
Together we will overcome this. Thank you for your constant support. Stay safe!
Head of School