- Guidelines for re-opening HIS for regular classes on Monday 6 April;
- Needing a Health Observation Form to get on the HIS bus;
- Spring Concert;
- Peace Ride;
- Introducing 2 of our new teachers for 2020/2021.
Dear HIS Community
As we finish our 19th day of distance learning, I would like to thank you all for the great work supporting your children at home. As you know, like all schools across Hiroshima Prefecture, we are planning to resume regular classes next week. HIS will start regular classes on Monday 6th April. We are really looking forward to seeing all of our students once again after the distance learning period which has been, including our Spring Break, 5-weeks.
We are excited, but of course, we are also anxious regarding the current public-health concerns and due to the uncertainty of the situation in the near future. What you can do to support us with the re-opening of school is to talk with your children about these guidelines. See if they have any questions. Perhaps explore what your child thinks are the reasons behind each point. Do they agree, or not. There are many avenues to explore. Understanding the reason behind a rule of guideline helps people follow them.
We understand that some families may wish to wait until later until they resume regular classes. If so, it is important that you let us know as soon as possible as this will help with our planning. With teachers in a class all day, obviously the distance learning model can not continue, however your teachers will let you know the approach they will take to support students not yet back.
Also, congratulations to our Gr 12 students who completed their Theory of Knowledge presentations today, the culmination of two years of great work where they looked at the question: How do we know what we know? They were really insightful, creative presentations and certainly demonstrated deep levels of critical thought. Well done!
Very important message about the buses
If you do not have a printer or can’t bring a form on Monday, please write and sign a note confirming all of the following details:
- Your child’s name & grade
- Student details
- Your child’s temperature in the morning – indicate the temperature in degrees Celcius (°C)
- No cough
- No runny nose
- No sore throat
- No Headache
- No other symptoms
- Family members details
- No symptoms, as detailed above.
We will distribute spare forms to all families with a plastic sleeve at school on Monday.
Guidelines for Reopening HIS for regular classes
Guidelines for Reopening HIS for regular classes (Download PDF version here.)
Please do not come to school if:
- You have been diagnosed with COVID-19
- 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.
- You have been in contact with anyone diagnosed with COVID 19 within the past 14 days
- You have returned from overseas within the past 14 days.
- You are staying in the same household with anyone who has returned to Japan from overseas within the past 14 days.
- 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).
- 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.
All students and staff (i.e. everyone at school) will need to complete a Health Observation Form 健康観察カード April 2020 each morning when we open as a precautionary measure. For students, we will need to check using the following procedure:
- Symptoms: Please do not send your child to school if he/she, or any family members, have any of the listed symptoms; cough, runny nose, sore throat, headache or higher than normal temperature. It is better to be cautious.
- Paper Form– The Health Observation Form will be a paper form so students can have it on-hand and it will work as a pass for bus/school entry. On Monday, we will give all students a small plastic case to carry this form in plus an extra form on orange paper. For Monday, please print one yourself or provide a handwritten one (Confirming absence of symptoms) if you can’t print at home.
- Front Entrance– All students will need to enter the school through the front entrance. We will lock the back gate into the park.
- Needed to ride the HIS bus: Bus students will need to present the completed Health Observation Form to the bus monitor before getting on the bus.
- School Entry – Staff members will be at the front door and non-bus students will need to present the completed form before entering school.
- Homeroom– Students will also present these to Homeroom teachers in the morning. (Hopefully, with the bus & front door checks, everyone will have one so this will just be a final check.)
If a student does not have a Health Observation Form completed, we will need to isolate them and contact parents. Please note that this is not something that we will be able to do in the school office if a student forgets their Health Observation Form. We really do need parents to support us with this.
- Clubs: There will not be any After School Clubs for the remainder of the school year.
- 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.
- Hay fever awareness: We will remind everyone that some members of the community are affected by hay fever so we need to be sensitive to their needs, such as not assuming a sneeze means a virus-related condition.
- 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.)
- Hand Sanitizer: There are hand sanitizers in each classroom. Students may also wish to have their own private sanitizer if they wish.
- 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.
- 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).
- 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.
- Fresh Air: Teachers will ensure that the windows of all classes will be open during and in between classes to ensure airflow.
- Social distancing: Each morning staff will remind students to maintain distance between themselves as much as possible.
- Lunch utensils: Please supply some type of eating utensils so that students do not need to eat their lunch with their fingers.
- Possible adjusted start times: We will consider adjusted starting times for students taking public transport. Details to be advised.
- 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.
- Public transport timing: If you come to school by public transport, please consider the timing of your bus or train. If it is normally a busy time, please consider either an earlier or later time to avoid the rush. Arriving at school late, for this reason, is no problem. You know your particular route, so please do your best to avoid the crowded times as a precaution.
- Masks: Please wear a mask if you have one available.
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.
For families wishing to remain at home for a while longer
A component of distance learning will continue after regular schooling resumes. We will do our best to maintain the distance learning structures that are possible, however, obviously with teachers looking after their class all day, the model will look very different. We have been considering this transition back to regular schooling and what types of support we can continue. We will provide some guidelines for the transition model.
We also are mindful of the reality that we could suddenly find ourselves back in the full distance learning model at any time so we are keeping that in mind when planning our units of inquiry.
We will not hold the traditional Spring Concert on Sat. 23rd May but will hold alternative performance opportunities separately for Primary students and Secondary students.
We have had to cancel the Peace Ride this year, as you may have guessed, but are keen to get back on the bikes next year.
Introducing two of our incoming teachers in 2020/2021
We are looking forward to welcoming five new members to the HIS teaching team next year. Over the coming weeks, I will be introducing them to you and to start, this is Jessy and Abigael.
Jessy Bosmans (Primary)
I am very excited to be a part of the HIS learning community! After finishing my teaching degree at the International Teacher Education for Primary Schools in the Netherlands, I started my career in Japan and developed a passion for teaching the PYP in an inquiry-based classroom. As a lifelong learner, I believe in fun and engaging learning for all ages! In my spare time, I enjoy sewing and walking around the city.
Abigael Mawia (Primary)
My name is Abigael Mawia and I am very excited to be joining Hiroshima International School (HIS). I’m looking forward to years of learning, fun, and adventure. I can’t wait to learn about you all.
I am Kenyan, born and raised in the Eastern part of Nairobi, which is the capital of my country. I am a wife and a mother of two lovely girls aged 6 and 1&1/2. Currently, I live and work at The Agakhan Academy, an IB international school in Nairobi. I work at the elementary section where I have been teaching grades 2, 3, 4 and 5 for five years. As a homeroom teacher, I am passionate about a learning environment that allows holistic learning.
I hold a Bachelor of Education Arts with IT, from the University of Nairobi and a Primary Teachers Certificate from St. Lawrence Egoji Teachers College. I have also undertaken a series of professional development courses and workshops including three IB workshops among others. In addition, I possess a number of key and important soft and hard skills necessary for a great educator, which I look forward to using and share with the larger HIS community.
I am an enthusiastic teacher who seeks to promote authentic learning by creating a stimulating learning environment that allows holistic learning. My goal is to motivate learners to be independent, creative, critical thinkers and lifelong global-minded collaborators.
My interests outside school include traveling, exercising and make -up art. There is so much I am looking forward to this year and I am super excited to join HIS.
Note: One of my biggest assets in my personality is my infectious smile.