Dear SSIS Parents,
Last Friday afternoon, the Department of Education and Training (DoET) and the Ministry of Health (MOH, CDC division) visited our campus to inspect and evaluate our health office’s processes regarding the control and prevention of COVID-19 diphtheria, dengue fever, and Hand-Foot-Mouth Disease.
The inspectors were very impressed with our protocols and prevention measures and our community’s understanding of the measures, i.e., how well our students, staff, and parents have complied with our three-layered health and safety approach (masks, social distancing, and handwashing).
After the feedback and results, we have decided to cautiously relax our mask and social-distancing protocols beginning on Monday, November 2.
What Will Change
There will be three significant changes to our protocols:
- Students and staff will no longer be required to wear masks while on campus (however, masks are still encouraged). Note that all staff and students must still wear masks when entering and exiting campus (as per HCMC governmental regulations).
- Social-distancing will not be required in the classrooms.
- Parents will be allowed on campus for events. All events will be by invitation only and will have a mandatory pre-registration. Parents who have not registered for an event will not be allowed on campus. The first on-campus event will be the Head of School Coffee on November 5. Registration is required and will close Wednesday, November 4, at 11 am.
For additional information about the protocol changes, please read below.
New Mask Protocol for Students and Staff
The DoET states that students and staff are still encouraged to wear masks on campus, but it is no longer required for students and staff to wear masks while on campus. Masks are still mandatory in groups that exceed 30 people, where social distancing is not followed.
NOTE: Ho Chi Minh City directives to wear masks in public places remains in place. That means while entering and exiting the campus, students and staff must still wear masks.
What Does the New Mask Protocol Mean?
The relaxing of our mask protocol means that students and staff will no longer be required to use masks in the classrooms or offices, or when walking from one place to another on campus if social-distancing is maintained. However, any student, teacher, or staff member who wishes to wear a mask is, as always, entitled to do so.
New Social-Distancing Protocol
Similarly, social-distancing in the classrooms is no longer required but is still encouraged.
What Does the New Social-Distancing Protocol Mean?
The relaxing of our social-distancing protocol means that teachers will be able to rearrange their classrooms and will not need to enforce the one-meter spacing between students’ desks and workspaces.
Parents Invited to Campus for Events
These changes in protocols also mean that we will allow parents to attend events on campus by invitation, such as concerts and principal coffee mornings.
ALL events will require that parents register through sign-ups. Parents who have not signed up for an event will not be allowed on campus.
Parents will be required to wear masks at all times while on campus. Thus no food or drink will be served at events. Parents will also be required to complete the visitor health and travel screening form at the gate before entering the campus.
UPDATE: Head of School Coffee, November 5 – First Parent Event on Campus
As a result of the protocol changes, the Head of School Coffee on Student Achievement, next Thursday, November 5, 8:30 – 10:00, will now be held in our SSIS Auditorium. To attend, you must complete the registration form by Wednesday, November 4, at 11 am.
What Will Not Change
- The third layer of the protocols remains unchanged. We continue to encourage students to wash their hands frequently, and they will continue to have their hands sanitized as they enter classrooms. Our health office reminds us that hand-washing is the best protection against any virus.
- Temperature screening at the gate will continue for all students and staff. Students and staff who are sick or have a fever will need to stay at home. Students with a fever or flu-like symptoms will be sent home and must stay at home for 48 hours after the symptoms are gone. Students and staff with vomiting or diarrhea must stay home for 24 hours after symptoms are gone.
- Teachers will continue to sanitize desks and workspaces. Cleaners will continue to use the strict sanitation measures that are in place.
- Parent drop-off and pick-up procedures for ES will remain the same.
Cooperation is Key
Keeping our community safe and healthy is a collaborative effort. I thank you in advance for your cooperation and support.
We are truly blessed to live in an environment where we can enjoy such freedoms. However, we remain humble and prepared to revert to our strict three-layered protocol if the situation changes.
All good wishes,
Dr. Catriona Moran
Head of School