Letter To Parents Term 4 Plan

Dear parents and carers


On behalf of our school, I want to say a big thank you to all our students, parents, and carers for your
continued resilience and support during Term 3. I know remote and flexible learning has not always
been easy, but through our collective efforts, our students have continued to make valuable
progress in their learning. You can be confident that our school will support any student who has
fallen behind to catch up.
Term 4 is important for every Victorian student, and our teachers will strive to deliver high-quality
learning for everyone. Whether we’re teaching remotely or face-to-face, our focus for Term 4 is on
making sure that every student is supported in their wellbeing, learning, and transition needs.
The Victorian Government has outlined the staged return to on-site schooling as part of its gradual
roadmap towards reopening.
All Victorian schools will continue to provide remote and flexible learning for the remainder of Term
3, except specialist schools in rural and regional Victoria, who will continue on-site schooling
consistent with current arrangements.


Term 4 on-site schooling arrangements for students


Subject to the advice of the Victorian Chief Health Officer, the Victorian Government has released a
staged approach for students to return to on-site schooling.
The purpose of the plan is to get students back in the classroom as soon and as safely as possible
without putting at risk all that has been achieved through the period of restrictions to reduce the
spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
To achieve both these aims, the return to onsite learning needs to be staged, just as the easing of all
other restrictions are staged.
There are two reasons for this.
The first is that in metropolitan Melbourne, health authorities need to monitor the impact of
students and parents beginning to move across the city again before schools move to a full return.
Having one million students return to school all at once could compromise the ability to monitor this
impact.
The second reason is that VCE students must return in week one of Term 4 and must be able to
complete the three-hour General Achievement Test (GAT) that week. In order to ensure the focus is
on these students and the appropriate safety measures are in place, this means no other students
can be on-site on our secondary or P-12 campuses the week before the GAT.
This is the best way to ensure the ongoing safety of the whole community.
For our school, the following arrangements apply:


5–9 October (first week of Term 4)


• remote and flexible learning will continue for all students
• VCE and VCAL students can only attend on-site for essential assessments, including the
General Achievement Test (GAT) on Wednesday 7 October
• on-site supervision for children of permitted workers and vulnerable students will continue
to be provided, consistent with existing guidelines.


From 12 October (second week of Term 4)


• Year 11 and 12 students will attend on-site schooling full time. Year 10 students enrolled in a
VCE or VCAL program will attend for those units only
• remote and flexible learning will continue for all students in Year 7 to Year 10 (except Year
10 students studying VCE and VCAL units)
• on-site supervision will remain available for students in Year 7 to Year 10 who are the
children of permitted workers and vulnerable students.
This will continue until a date is set for the return of all students to on-site learning, based on health
advice.


Health and safety measures


The Term 3 remote and flexible learning arrangements were put in place to significantly reduce the
movement of more than one million students and their families across Victoria, to help slow the
spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Thanks to you and your family for contributing to this on behalf of
our school community.
As on-site schooling resumes, we will continue to have in place strong measures to protect the
health and safety of students, staff, families, and the community. This includes staggering start and
finish times, restricting parent access to school grounds, and continued emphasis on hand hygiene
and physical distancing where possible.
Whether your child is, or children are, returning to face-to-face learning or will be continuing with
remote and flexible learning, please be assured we will be focused on three key priorities in Term 4:


Mental health and wellbeing


Our highest priority will be the wellbeing, particularly the mental health, of every student and
member of staff. This means effectively mobilising all available resources to support our most
vulnerable students and enabling staff to access the relevant support services.


Learning and excellence


Some of our students have thrived in the remote and flexible learning environment, others have
maintained their learning progress, and some have fallen behind, despite their best efforts and those
of their families and teachers. Our priority will be supporting both those who need it to catch up and
those who have progressed to continue to extend their learning.


Transitions


We will make every effort to ensure successful transitions for children moving from kindergarten
into Prep, the Grade 6s moving into Year 7, and the Year 12s moving into employment or further
education and training.
We know some families are worried that their child may have to repeat a year due to the disruptions
of coronavirus (COVID-19). There is little evidence to support the benefits of repeating a year to catch
up. Instead, schools will use teaching strategies that draw on the best evidence available to help
students meet their learning needs.
Parents, families, and carers can be confident that the best option for almost every child is to stay with
their peer group, whether that is moving from kindergarten into Prep, or moving from Grade 6 into
Year 7 at secondary school, or students moving up any year level in between.
Our school, working with you, has shown it can be flexible and adaptable in responding to the
challenges of coronavirus (COVID-19) and will continue to meet student needs as we look towards
the end of the 2020 school year and ahead to 2021.


Kind regards
Vicki Watson
Lalor North Secondary College

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