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Newsletter for School and Nursery Closure 1st April 2020

Date: 1st April 2020
Dear Parent/Carer
Welcome to our first newsletter from our new “virtual” school and nursery!  It is purely unintentional that the date of this newsletter is 1st April!  (If someone had said last year that schools would close and you had to teach your children at home with on-line learning, we would all have thought it was a joke!)
 I hope you and your families are well and that you are adjusting to our new social distancing arrangements.
Childcare Hubs: Halfmerke Primary School
As you will know the Hub for St Kenneth’s parents/carers who are keyworkers and can apply for childcare, is in Halfmerke Primary School.  You will find the application form on SLC’s website and on our App and Twitter.  Many of St Kenneth’s staff, who are able, are volunteering in the Hub on a rota basis.  Across South Lanarkshire the number of volunteers has been considerable which is terrific.
Online Learning: Google Classroom and E- Learning Journals (nursery)
My thanks to staff on upskilling themselves in a short space of time in order to post classwork on line for children.  Well done also to parents who have been launched into “teacher” roles and are doing a great job of tutoring children.  (I am sure this is all carried out in a calm, patient and stress free way!!) The chat at the checkout in Aldi’s the other day was about teaching children phonics!!  It made me smile!  I hope we are not doing ourselves out of a job at the end of this!!
Logging in: In order to ensure that we have everyone logged in who can, there is a google form on the App and Twitter which parents are asked to complete for each child.  This will allow us to work our way through those who are not connected.
Access to the internet or digital device: Arrangements will be put in place to reach families who do not have internet access or access to a tablet or laptop and therefore, at present, have no way of accessing classwork.  Once we have responses to our questionnaires we will contact parents individually as we try to address this.
Connectivity issues: If you have problems with logging in please use the following e-mail address and we will get back to you as soon as possible. (Wee tip!  If you have more than one child you need to log out of Glow before the next child logs into the same device otherwise it will revert to child 1)
Technical Issues:
Classwork posted by the teacher: Class teachers will post work on Mondays and Wednesdays.  This will mostly be posted by 10.30am.  This will have a due date as teachers need to be able to organise their tasks.  However, at present, the children do not need to get it back by the exact date.  If your child is getting to the work at some point then that is terrific and well done!
For nursery: Keyworkers will post activities twice a week on the children’s E-Learning Journals.
Work posted by children: Teachers/nursery staff will comment on the work posted.  Teachers can also assist if your child needs guidance on how to post back work.
If you are unwell: We understand that children/carers may be unwell and therefore will not be accessing work.  The most important thing is that children and families are looking after themselves, so please do not worry if you are not fit to carry out any tasks.  We will be delighted to hear from you when you are recovered.
Easter Holiday/Spring Break
Although we are in a new realm, it is important that our families and staff all have down time.  Staff will not post new work over the Spring Break.  Some of us are also working in the HUB during this time too.  Suggestions and activities will be posted this week for things the children can do over the break.  We hope this gives everyone a chance to re-energise.
We are still here to help, so please use the e-mail address below to communicate with
St Kenneth’s.
Easter Season
With our churches and places of worship closed, we could be in danger of forgetting that Easter is the Catholic Church’s greatest feast and we are moving into Holy Week next week.  In our Easter activities, we will remind children to spend some time in prayer- and at this time there is much to pray for as well as to be thankful for.
St Kenneth’s Families Have Got Talent: Twitter Stars Wanted!
This week would have been our annual talent show – a highlight of our school year!  So that we don’t miss out during lockdown, we would like to show off what families have been doing during lockdown, on our school Twitter account.  If you are up for this and want to send a photograph or even a video we will upload it to our Twitter over the Spring break.  So come on families!  Our children are very talented so we know it comes from somewhere!  Let’s see what you can do!
Please send any posts to:
Transitions, Admissions, Inductions

  • Primary 7: We hope to produce the Leavers’ Yearbook for Primary 7 children.  P7s should check their Google Classwork as some information (including selfies!) is being asked for over Easter.
  • Nursery Leavers: We will be in touch with parents after Easter about ways in which we can celebrate our nursery leavers.
  • Nursery Extended Hours: Parents will have already heard that the Scottish Government have acknowledged that Local Authorities will not meet the August deadline for this.  Again, we will need to wait and see what the next steps will be regarding August admissions.

After Easter, we may have a clearer picture of how long the schools will be closed for and what plans may be in place for the new term.  That information is not available at present.
I hope everyone is safe and well and that parents/carers who are providing essential services at this time are taking good care of themselves and stay safe.
Yours sincerely
Geraldine O’Hanlon
Head Teacher

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