COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- How are teachers teaching?
- What are teachers teaching?
- My child has TOO much to do!
- The teachers are great… but I don’t want them all contacting me!
- What if my student is not engaging with their learning?
- Devices for students
- Safety online
- How can I find resources to help my family during these difficult times?
1. How are teachers teaching?
We have continued to work on a modified 5-period per day timetable for a number of reasons. Primarily, it was to ensure that we could organise the crucial Contact times - Google Meets - in a framework that made teachers use their normal timetable times! Subjects that have 4 periods per week will have 2 ‘contact times’, subjects that have 3 or fewer periods per week will have at least 1 ‘contact time’. The contact times will always take place in that subject’s normal timetable time.
Teachers will be available at that contact time and will almost always be available for a video meet, although that may not last for the whole time. They are there to answer any questions, organise any group chats, share information or even physically teach.
Now, it will allow us to continue with distance learning as well as supervise students who need to be at school.
2. What are teachers teaching?
Teaching Plans are available on our website, outlining the learning tasks and activities for the week. We are making these available in response to a number of parents/caregivers saying they don’t know what their children are supposed to be doing. These will be updated weekly by teachers. Please note the dates of the plans as they currently start on a Wednesday but will move to a ‘normal’ school when students start to return to school.
3. My child has TOO much to do!
We are aware that there are concerns about students having too much work to do. Unlike in the classroom when teachers can gauge who is doing what, that isn’t possible currently and we aren’t always taking into account the wide variety in home situations that impact on how students can learn. We will continue to look at this as we move forward.
4. The teachers are great… but I don’t want them all contacting me!
We are conscious of lots of contact from teachers to home, and possibly too much in some cases – this comes from a place of genuine concern for students, as frustrating as that may be to some. We have already streamlined that process, so any concerns will be coming to you from one person – the Ako Teacher or the Dean at this point.
5. What if my student is not engaging with their learning?
We are concerned that a number of students who are able to connect online, are not doing so – not turning up to Ako Time or to class ‘contact time’. Let the Ako Teacher or Dean know if you need some help in this regard. For seniors, its hugely important that they are engaged with their learning right now – there may be very few opportunities for ‘catching up’ later, and if there are opportunities, these may be limited.
6. Devices for students
A number of student were identified recently as not having access to a device and we were pleased to be assist them by lending UHC Chromebooks and adding them to the Ministry list of students to receive devices. If your child is unable to access a device for remote learning, or you don’t have internet access for distance learning, please contact your child’s Ako teacher or Dean.
7. Safety online
The Ministry of Education and N4L are concerned with ensuring students are kept safe when they are connected to the internet. They are providing a free safety filter, complete with instructions that can be set up on a student’s learning device if there are no safety filters operating already. They also offer further good advice on using the internet.
For general information, see this letter from the Ministry of Education and N4L
For further information,visit N4L's Switch on Safety page.
8. How can I find resources to help my family during these difficult times?
The Ministry has provided a range of resources that may be helpful for families – these can be found on our website page – Supporting Wellbeing at Home