With Monday’s announcement by the Government, we are implementing our plan to support your son’s learning from home. We appreciate this is a sudden and significant change and will be disruptive to many people in the community. Today our teachers are preparing for online learning by tomorrow, Wednesday. Students should make sure they have a place to study and log into their lessons. You and your son will be receiving multiple emails and messages from the school and their teachers. This is a different way of working for most teachers, let alone the young men of the College. Please continue to be patient and kind. We really appreciate the many messages of goodwill that have already been received from families.
If you know of members from the De La Salle community who do not have access to the internet or who are not receiving key messages from the school, please share. You will have received an email last night from De La Salle College about being able to provide internet and a device for your son. By early this morning we had over 200 replies.
Your greatest concerns are keeping the boys focused on learning and avoiding the distractions both online and offline. Another worry is that you may not be able to answer questions or help him with his lessons. For many of us having a single device in the home and sharing amongst family have its own challenges. A number of families also requested paper or hard copies of assigned work.
We are also aware that there are families who will require or who have requested paper/hard copies of work. Today we are putting together bundles of work for those students at all year levels. We will be posting and making these available for our families.
We recommend that your son gets into a daily routine of school – at least for the next two weeks. The best thing that your son can do is keep to his timetable. Subject teachers will be using their timetables to plan their days and will be checking in on classes at those times. They will endeavour to make contact and follow up with any specific questions that students have.
Students will be expected to check all forms of communication such as Microsoft OneNote class pages and their school email. For some students they will need to go back through their emails to look for invitations to different classes if they are not already enrolled.
A typical lesson at home might involve students logging into their class Teams or class Notebook at the beginning of the lesson. We encourage all students to check their school email for updates. For some classes the teacher may work with meetings. Links will be available in their Teams pages to a range of materials. Some teachers will upload instruction for lessons, explain relevant links and resources and teach the important concepts of the lesson.
It is expected that students make themselves available and attend their lessons remotely.
Our teachers and some of our students have already practised remote learning through Microsoft Teams. Students will be expected to do the work set by teachers and seek clarification on any assignments if they need to. We will email you tomorrow with further details about online learning and how students can access IT support.
Our young men can be flexible and adapt to change. However, there will be some that will find these rapid changes and uncertainty concerning. This is perfectly understandable and a normal reaction. The Ministry of Education has put together some information to support conversations with your son http://education.govt.nz/school/health-safety-and-wellbeing/pastoral-care-and-wellbeing/talking-to-children-about-covid-19-coronavirus/
We will continue to communicate with you over the coming days. Thank you for your ongoing support. Together we will ensure your son’s learning continues and that this transition is as smooth as possible.
Mr M Hogarty