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Nau mai, haere mai, talofa lava, malo e lelei, bula vinaka, kia orana, warm greetings

Welcome back to Term 4! I hope you all had a chance to relax and reconnect with your families over the school holiday period.

You will be aware of Government’s decision that all staff and workers who may have contact with children and students in schools and kura must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by 1 January 2022. This measure has the support of education entities including the representative bodies of teachers and principals.

As the employer, we are responsible for ensuring the Government’s Health Orders are put into practice.

The health and wellbeing of our students, staff, and everyone involved in the safe operation of our school is something we take very seriously. As with other diseases that many of us are vaccinated from (measles, meningitis, pneumonia, tetanus and polio), without vaccination we’re at risk of serious illness, disability and in extreme cases, even death.

Because not everyone can be vaccinated – including very young babies, those who are seriously ill or have certain allergies – they depend on us to be vaccinated to ensure they are also safe from vaccine-preventable diseases. By getting vaccinated against COVID-19, we are protecting ourselves and protecting those around us.

By getting vaccinated, we’re less likely to get sick from COVID-19, and we’re also less likely to pass it on.

A large number of our teachers and staff have already chosen to vaccinate to protect themselves and their learners and whānau. We are working with the remainder of our team to ensure they have the information and support they need to get their first dose by 15 November and to be fully vaccinated for the New Year.

Many other countries, including Australia and the United States, have mandated that their education workforce be vaccinated to assist in the safe reopening of schools.

A fully vaccinated education workforce provides reassurance for parents and whānau that it’s safe for their children and young people to attend school, and benefit from being with their friends and face-to-face learning with their teachers.

We appreciate all the efforts of parents and whānau to keep children and young people safe and engaged in their learning.

We will continue to update you with the latest public health and other information as it becomes available.

In the meantime, here are a few Levels 2 reminders; 

· Parents dropping off and picking up children at school must not enter the school premises to do so. This is to happen outside the school gate.

· Face coverings are required to be worn by Year 9 to 13 students when on school transport at all Alert Levels.

· We encourage public health advice to be followed, including:

    • wash and dry your hands frequently, cough and sneeze into your elbow, do not touch your face
    • wear a face covering where possible and maintain a two-metre distance from people you do not know
    • if you have cold, flu or COVID-19 symptoms stay at home and call Healthline or your GP
    • be vigilant with scanning in – use the COVID-19 contact tracer app.