Dear Parents and Guardians,
Just over two weeks ago 1300 students and 100 staff left MRSS ready for a much anticipated Spring Break. However, things have changed dramatically since then and the last few weeks have proven to be difficult and challenging for everyone. Hopefully you and your loved ones are healthy and safe and that positive news is on the horizon.
As we adjust to this new reality, I want to ask for your support and understanding as our educational assistants, youth care workers, teachers, clerical staff and administrative team work together to respond to the suspension of in-class instruction. MRSS prides itself on building community and on the opportunities for students to connect both inside and outside the classroom. Therefore, we’ve got a challenge ahead of us to re-connect your son/daughter to a positive learning environment in an online setting. Though this may take time, it is our goal to make these connections and to create a small sense of community and normalcy in this quickly changing environment.
Since the announcement to suspend in-school learning was made after Spring Break had begun, teachers have had little time to plan, collaborate, and access resources to prepare for this new reality. Therefore, we will be begin the week of March 30th reconnecting with our staff and collaboratively developing both social-emotional and educational goals for our students. Later in the week, your student will receive an initial contact from one of their teachers. This will be a quick check-in to discuss the present situation, assess technological needs, and answer any questions. The rest of the week teachers will be focused on designing online learning opportunities for our students in absence of face to face contact. Our hope is that by April 6th teachers will begin to roll out their initial activities, assignments and lessons.
It is essential that we stay focused on student and staff safety as we navigate this situation together. Therefore, access to the school will be restricted to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus. If there is a need for students to collect any critical supplies (medications, computers) that were left in lockers before Spring Break, I will be letting you know later next week when this can happen. Until then, parents, guardians and students should not come to the school or school grounds.
I know there are likely many questions and concerns that remain, and I will be in communication with you as we move through the initial steps of our work to provide continuity of educational services for your students. Please check the School District website https://www.sd42.ca/ frequently as they are quick to update district and ministry information. For example, they presently have an Essential Worker Survey that some of you may need to complete.
Finally, when we see students face to face it is much easier to assess their readiness to learn and to connect to both their stresses and successes outside of school. We recognize that this is an incredibly challenging time for many students and their families. Please communicate with us if there are circumstances that will affect your son or daughter’s ability to complete online coursework. Please stay safe and healthy. If you have any immediate concerns, as always, please feel free to email me: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Acting Principal, Maple Ridge Secondary