Please see below the latest updates on Friday 28th August regarding the School reopening to students and staff next week;
Covid-19 Response Plan
Please click on the link to view our Covid-19 Policy signed by the Chairperson of our Board of Management Ms. Linda Skillington. At a special meeting of the GCC Board of Management on Thursday 27 August the GCC Covid-19 Response plan was ratified by the Board of Management. Please see attached also the Checklist for School Management. At this meeting the members of the Board were presented with written responses to the 55 point ‘Check list for School Management’ document (Appendix 6 pages 39-42 from the COVID-19 Response Plan for the safe and sustainable reopening of Post Primary schools).
Parents and students (over 18 years of age) are reminded that you must inform the school in writing if you intend to travel abroad. This includes your travel details. This requirement is necessary for the protection of public health. Travelling to countries on the ‘Green List’ does not necessitate restriction of movement on return. However, as the ‘Green List’ is updated periodically if the status of a country changes (removed from the Green List) after outward journey this will require two weeks of self-isolation when you return.
Student Return to School
Next Tuesday 1 September our 1st Year and 6th Years will begin the formal return of students to school. The procedure for the return of students is as follows:
- Students are to gather in the basketball courts at the back of the school where there will be a designated area for each individual class group. Please note students must have a face covering. In the event of poor weather students will gather in the PE Hall. Again students must have a face covering.
- Students will be brought to their classroom by their class teacher (continuing to wear a face covering).
- Using the dispenser available in each classroom, students must sanitize their hands as they enter the classroom.
- Students will be assigned a seat by their class teacher. This will be their assigned seat for all their base classes.
- On each desk the student will find a visor, and hand sanitizing bottle. Students must continue to wear a face covering.
- Please note we are still awaiting delivery of the reusable face mask. These will be distributed to students as soon as they become available.
- Students must bring their own lunch each day until the online purchase system is installed. We will notify parents once this system is in place.
- Morning break for students is from 11.35am to 11.50am.
- The same procedure will be followed for other year groups on Wednesday and Thursday.
The following is the schedule for the return of students next week. The full calendar is available on the school website;
GCC CALENDAR 2020-2021 TERM 1
|Monday 31st August||Staff Planning Day||8.50a.m. –3.50pm.||0025/2011 and 0045/2016|
|Tuesday 1st September||1st & 6th Years +LCA2||8.50am. – 12.30pm.|
|Staff Meeting||1.10p.m. – 3.50p.m.|
|Wednesday 2nd Sept.||3rd & 5th Years +LCA1||8.50am. – 12.30pm.|
|Staff Meeting||1.10pm. – 3.50pm.|
|Thursday 3rd September||1st, 2nd, TY, 6th +LCA2||8.50am. – 12.30pm.|
|Staff Meeting||1.10pm. – 3.50pm.|
|Friday 4th September||Full School Day for all Year Groups||8.50 am. – 1.00pm.|
Parents and students are asked to note that the school has designated the dressing rooms outside the PE Hall (green container) as the isolation room in the event of a case of or suspected case of Covid-19. As per the protocol these dressing rooms are for this purpose only and cannot be used under any circumstance for another reason.
We will be operating a ‘walk on the left-hand side’ system on the corridors. This is clearly marked on the floor of the corridor with signage at regular intervals . Students are not allowed to congregate on the corridors.
Students must be in proper school uniform every day. Students are allowed to wear their school tracksuit on the day they have PE. Please note leggings are not permitted.
Each student toilet will display the maximum number of students permitted entry at any one time. This will be dependent on the number of cubicles, the size of the toilet, the availability of urinals and the number of sinks. If a student enters a toilet and the maximum number of students is already present the student is expected to exit the toilet area, wait outside and follow a one in one out system. It is the individual student’s responsibility to follow this protocol. Students are not allowed to congregate together in toilet areas and failure to co-operate with this instruction will be regarded as a serious breach of our Code of Behaviour.
Please note parents and visitors can only enter the school by prior appointment/arrangement. No unplanned visits or entry to the school will be permitted under any circumstances. All visitors must wear a face covering when in the school grounds or school building. If you have an appointment to visit the school please wait in the foyer area in the B-Block.
Despite restructuring classroom seating to optimize social distancing, due to our large student numbers it will not always be possible to meet the recommended social distancing requirements (either 1m or 2m) in many of our classrooms. For example, each of our 1st Year classes have the maximum 30 students in each of the core subjects (Irish, English, Maths etc.). We must also factor in the presence of the subject teacher and special needs assistant (SNA) when necessary to support students’ learning. Therefore, in line with the recommendations outlined in the Roadmap for the full reopening of schools all staff and students must have a face covering during all classes. Furthermore, despite reorganizing student areas for break times, such is the large number of students we have on campus, we are insisting that students must have a face visor as a minimum requirement when on corridors or outside.
Key Covid Messages
Please see attached important Covid messages that we are required to highlight to parents, staff and students. These key messages will be emphasized again at staff and student induction next week.
Each year group will have a designated outdoor area for their break times. These will be available to students weather permitting. With numbers in most of our Year Groups in and around of 200 students we are insisting that students continue to wear a face covering when outdoors at break times. Students will also be allowed have their lunch in their designated classroom but must sit in their assigned seat.
A reminder to all of us in our school community that no interpersonal activity is without risk of transmission of infection at any time. The key challenge for the school will be to balance the need for a practical and sensible level of caution with the need to provide a supportive environment for teaching and learning. We look forward to welcoming back all our students next week.
GCC Senior Management