2nd Update: Reopening Eyrecourt School

Posted on Thursday, August 13, 2020

Dear Parent/Guardian, Staff Member,

In this update, I will explain some of the protocols we have considered and started to put in place. Remember there will be further updates before we return and we have many little issues still to sort out.

  • Hand Sanitisers/Handwashing
Teachers will make children aware of the proper hygiene procedures regarding hand washing and etiquette related to sneezing, coughing or spitting.  All the school staff will be attending a day workshop on Cleaning Methods and Hand Hygiene at the end of August. This course run by Neylons which will be held in our school will have us fully up to date on best practice.  Staff will also be taking mandatory training from the Department of Education in preparation for the schools reopening. 
Patricia and I did a full audit of the school on Monday and there will be hand sanitiser stations throughout the school.  As noted in the previous update, it would be good for children to have their own little bottle for their desk along with a little packet of wipes. 
We would be grateful if you could also emphasise safe behaviour in this regard to your children at home as part of the preparation for returning to school.  It would be helpful to revisit handwashing videos and practice again how to wash our hands properly. This video from the HSE would be a suitable one to follow. 
  • School Uniform
There has been some talk in the media of school uniforms spreading Covid. In all the documentation from the Department of Education and in the Response Plan for schools, there is no mention of this and Leo Varadkar has said that school uniforms do not pose a risk. 
Good practice would be to take off the school uniform as soon as the child is home and air it out or have two sets of uniform so that the child can alternate. 
We are blessed with a very attractive school uniform which was chosen by the parents in 2010.  Unlike other schools our tracksuit looks as well as the proper uniform.  As the children are settling back into wearing uniform we as teachers won't be confining tracksuit day to "PE day".  Students can wear the school tracksuit as many days of the week as they prefer. 

The whole point of a school uniform is equality among pupils. Everyone is the same regardless of background. 

We would ask that parents purchase the tracksuit bottoms that look like trousers. Here is the link to the Dunnes version. No skinnies, no joggers and absolutely no logos or brand names.
The t-shirt is a blue polo t-shirt. 
The school top must be purchased from the Schoolwear Centre. This is the direct link.  You can purchase online or simply phone them for the top to be delivered to your house or to the school. You can also call into them in Galway. 
If we are lucky to have fine weather on return, pupils can wear shorts.  Again, keep to navy. Try to keep them as plain as possible and not too short. The girls may wear their Eyrecourt camogie skorts.
  • Outdoor gear
We will be outside as much as possible on return and a raincoat with a hood would be really helpful for all children. It would mean that we could still take break outside if it was raining lightly.  As we go into winter, make sure your child has a good coat with a hood. 
All children should pack a pair of socks in their school bag for any day their feet get wet on grass. The kids who would like to play soccer at break should have a pair of boots or old runners for changing into. 
For Ms McGrath's class who play on the playground: a pair of wellies to leave in school for the days when the grass is wet would be very helpful. 

Finally for this week:
While all children will be welcome back to school, we would remind parents that, where children are displaying colds, coughs or flu like symptoms, they should not be sent to school.  Children who display such symptoms in school will be isolated and parents asked to collect them from the school.
Children who have travelled from countries not on the Green List should not attend school during the 14-day self-isolation period
Further information on COVID-19 symptoms in children is available at: -
https://www2.hse.ie/conditions/coronavirus/if-your-child-has-symptoms.html

I hope this update has answered some questions you may have had. We have a lot in place already but we have a lot more preparations to do.  As always, if you have any concerns, please contact me on etreacy@eyrecourtns.ie

Until next week,
Kind regards,
√Čilis Treacy
Principal

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