The Crane, 27 March 2020

Principal’s Message

Dear HIS Community

As we have just completed our 14th day of distance learning I would like to thank our HIS community for your continued support. We are continuing with the distance learning model next week in order to align our start with the public and private schools in Hiroshima Prefecture. We are maintaining close contact with the Prefecture and also with the Japan Council of International Schools (JCIS) to inform decisions. Below you will find a list of guidelines for our return to regular schooling and I would like to express my gratitude to both Hiroshima Prefecture and JCIS for sharing their ideas which have helped us to form these guidelines in preparation for our return to regular school.

Guidelines for Reopening HIS

  1. Please do not come to school if:
    1. You have been diagnosed with COVID-19
    2. You have a high fever (37.5 degrees or higher), a persistent cough or any cold/flu-like symptoms. Also, when you take your temperature in the morning and you have a higher temperature than normal (i.e. it is rising but may not yet be at 37.5 degrees, you should stay home to monitor.)  See note below regarding daily temperature/general symptom check. 
    3. You have been in contact with anyone diagnosed with COVID 19 within the past 14 days
    4. You have returned from overseas within the past 14 days.
    5. You are staying in the same household with anyone who has returned to Japan from overseas within the past 14 days.
    6. You are staying in the same household of a family member (or another close contact) who has cold or flu-like symptoms. In this case, home-isolation for 14 days from the first day of those symptoms should be observed unless the symptoms do not last for more than 3 days or the condition is diagnosed by a doctor and is proven not to be COVID-19). 
  2. Daily Temperature/General Symptoms Check: Please check your child’s temperature every morning. Children do not often realize they have a high temperature until later in the day. If we find out at school it is too late. As usual, please do not send your child to school if they are not well. This is especially important now, as you can imagine. 
    1. We will ask families to record the temperature/general symptom check on a chart that we will send home next week so that you can practice.
    2. When schools resume, all students need to bring this with them and show them to their homeroom teacher. We will require this for students to get on the HIS buses, as well. We will need everyone to help us with this. Thanks
  3. Clubs: There will not be any After School Clubs for the remainder of the school year.   
  4. Hygiene: Students will be instructed each morning the most effective way to minimize the effect of coughing and sneezing. How to protect others when you sneeze. Keeping hands away from the face and hair is also encouraged.
  5. Hayfever awareness: We will remind everyone that some members of the community are affected by hayfever so we need to be sensitive to their needs, such as not assuming a sneeze means a virus-related condition. 
  6. General Health: Students need to be getting enough sleep, regular exercise, eating well and drinking lots of water, as usual. All students should have a reusable water bottle with them each day. (There is a Hands-free bottle filler at the school.)
  7. Hand Sanitizer: There are hand sanitizers in each classroom. Students may also wish to have their own private sanitizer if they wish.
  8. Washing of hands: Students will be reminded daily about the most effective way of washing hands. The drying of hands is equally important and the recommendation is single-use paper towels. 
    1. Due to potentially limited supplies at school, it is recommended that each student bring in a 200 package of single-use paper towels (Daiso ¥100).
  9. Masks on the bus: The Hiroshima Bus Association has advised CMC drivers that passengers should wear masks. Students using the bus should wear a mask if available. 
  10. Fresh Air: Teachers will ensure that the windows of all classes will be open during and in between classes to ensure airflow.
  11.  Social distancing: Each morning staff will remind students to maintain distance between themselves as much as possible. 
  12. Lunch utensils: Please supply some type of eating utensils so that students do not need to eat their lunch with their fingers. 
  13.  Possible adjusted start times: We will consider adjusted starting times for students taking public transport. Details to be advised.
  14.  Attendance: If you are concerned about your child attending school they can continue their learning through a modified version of distance learning. Your child will not be marked absent during this time, although we still need parents to inform us. This is important for our emergency procedures in case of an evacuation, for example.  

What happens if there is a case of COVID-19 within the HIS Community

In the case of a HIS student or staff member with a COVID-19 diagnosis

  • If a student or staff member is diagnosed with COVID-19 the School will move to online learning for at least the next 3 calendar days during which time:
    • The local health authorities will be consulted to determine the length and scope of school closure.
    • The school will undergo disinfection.

In the case of close contact of a HIS staff or student with someone with a COVID-19 diagnosis

  • If there is a case of COVID-19 in the extended community such as a family member, the student/staff member will quarantine at home as described above.
    • The School will alert other parents, but school will continue as normal.
    • Parents who choose to keep their child at home are welcome to do so.

In the case that a student develops symptoms during the school day

  • If a student develops symptoms while at school, they will be immediately placed into isolation while parents are contacted to arrange for the immediate collection from school. 
    • In this case, parents must collect their child by private car, not by public transportation, including taxis. 

In the case of an absence caused by illness but in the case that COVID-19 testing has NOT been recommended

  • In the case that a student or staff member is ill but was not recommended for testing for COVID-19, return to school is possible only after all three of the below criteria are met:
    • You have been free of fever for three full calendar days without the use of fever-reducing medication.
    • Any other symptoms (for example, cough or shortness of breath) have improved.
    • At least 7 calendar days have passed since the symptoms first appeared, counting the first day of symptoms as day 1.

Crane Video

Congratulations to our DP Music Students

Thank you to our Diploma Program Music students for the wonderful performances on Friday evening. You will be able to see some clips on the Crane Video. That was the result of serious dedication to your preparation with all of the untold hours of practice that went into the performance. We don’t see those many lonely hours of practice when you get up on stage, but we know they are behind you. Congratulations.

Thank you to our teachers and parents for all the collaboration

Here is the Primary team on Friday, looking back over the week of distant learning, sharing ideas and getting ready for one more. The Secondary teachers were meeting as well, making sure that we are all learning and improving. The distance learning model, in this context, is new to our teachers and it is also new to our parents. Thank you to all of our parents who have been exploring this new model of learning with us over the past 14 school days and also to all of our teachers who are forging new ground in their own teaching practice. We often speak of education as a partnership between the teacher, parent, and child and these 14 days have really highlighted how important this ongoing collaboration is.

Grade 4/5 Video – A Paper Throw  Challenge

This is a rare glimpse into the lives of our Gr4/5 class and some great ideas presented. Thank you.