G7-8 Start of Semester 2 & Campus Orientation

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Dear Middle School Parents / Guardians of Grade 7 and 8 Students,

It is with great excitement that we are welcoming Grade 7 and 8 students back to campus to start Semester 2 on Tuesday, January 11. In preparation, we ask that you read this letter carefully so that your child is fully prepared. The first days will be spent ensuring students understand and can follow these new procedures.

Also, in case you missed the Return to Campus Q & A session with Dr. Moran last night, you are now able to view the video here.

Much Remains the Same

We understand that there will be many varied emotions about returning to campus. However, please remember that the most important things remain the same: dedicated educators eager to provide students with high-quality learning experiences, friends’ and classmates’ happy smiles, and a supportive community of teachers, advisors, and counselors committed to seeing your child succeed.

Staggered Start

In order to best support students in the first week of returning to campus, we have created a staggered start for grade 7 and 8 students. Please read carefully to see when your child will be on campus this coming week. For your reference, teaching and learning for grade 6 remains virtual until further notice.

Tuesday, Jan. 11

A-D Classes

Wednesday, Jan. 12

E-H Classes

Thursday, Jan. 13

A-D Classes

Friday, Jan. 14

E-H Classes

G8

8:30-10:00 On-Campus Orientation

11:20 – 3:00 Virtual

G7

8:00-11:10 Virtual

1:00-2:30 On-Campus Orientation

G7  Virtual

G8  On Campus

G7 On Campus

G8 Virtual

G7 On Campus

G8 On Campus

 

The mandatory Student Orientation will include the following:

  • Health and safety training
  • Tech set up (bring your fully charged laptop)
  • Campus Tour
  • Review of Schedule and Classes
  • Assignment of Lockers / Locks
  • House Leagues shirts (for those who ordered – bring 120,000 VND)

Schedule Adjustment

We have adjusted the class schedule slightly to account for being in a physical environment. All students will follow this new schedule whether they are on campus or continuing to learn in the virtual environment:

Orientation Day: Tuesday, January 11
Grade 7 Grade 8
8:00-8:30am Advisory Virtual 8:30-10:00am Orientation On Campus
8:40 – 9:50am Block A Virtual
10:00-11:10am Block B Virtual  10:00-11:10am Transition Back Home
11:20 – 12:50pm Lunch

Transition to School

11:20 – 12:30pm Block C Virtual
1:00-2:30 Orientation On Campus 12:30 – 1:35pm Lunch/Recess
1:45 – 3:00pm Block D Virtual

 

Class Timings for 

Wednesday, Jan. 12 – Friday, Jan. 14

8:00 – 9:20am Block 1
9:30 – 10:50am Block 2
11:00 – 12:20pm Block 3
12:20 – 1:00pm Lunch/Recess
1:05 – 1:35pm Advisory / Dragon Time
1:45 – 3:00pm Block 4

 

In Preparation for First Day

Below you will find a list of what to bring on the first day of school, as well as the new heightened health and safety measures put in place at SSIS to comply with the Vietnamese government regulations for COVID-19 prevention. You will also find the schedule changes and new routines. 

Once again, I urge parents and students to read this information carefully, as it will ensure that we are all prepared and know what to expect next week.

TO BRING ON THE FIRST FULL DAY OF SCHOOL

  • 2 masks (3 if you have PE or are planning on being physically active at lunch)
  • ID card (bring money to purchase a new ID card if card is lost)
  • Wear school uniform 
    • If you do not have a uniform, you can purchase one at the school store on Monday, January 10 from 7:30-4:00 or you can purchase it during the week.  
    • You may also use this uniform ordering form to purchase various uniform items online.
    • If you do not have a uniform, please wear clothing that is as close as possible to our school uniform in color and style. We expect all students to be in uniform by Friday, January 14.
  • Backpack
  • Fully charged laptop and charging cord
  • Headphones and/or earpods
  • Water bottle
  • Snack 
  • Lunch (if not planning on purchasing lunch in the cafeteria)
  • Money to top up Caterers account if needed
  • A healthy body – remember, students who have any flu-like symptoms or a temperature of 37.8 or above must stay home until they are symptom-free without medication for 48 hours

HEALTH AND SAFETY

  • Self-Test: We request that all students complete a COVID self-test before returning to campus on Tuesday, January 11 to support the health and safety of our community.
  • Completion of Daily Health Survey: Students must complete the health survey every morning before entering campus (or bus, if applicable).
  • Mandatory Mask Usage: Everyone on campus must wear a mask at all times, even during PE. Students will need to bring 2 masks daily (3 if classes include PE or the student is planning on being physically active during lunch). Medical masks or washable cloth masks are approved. 
  • Increased Hygiene Measures: All students must wash their hands or use hand sanitizer immediately upon entering a classroom. Prior to departing any area, students will assist with the disinfection of all shared surfaces. All shared materials and equipment will be disinfected as well (for example, PE or science equipment). Students may bring their own hand sanitizer or use the school-provided sanitizer.   
  • Social Distancing: Students will be seated 1.5m apart, facing the same direction. Everyone must keep 1.5-2m apart at all times, including in hallways, cafeteria, etc. We know students will want to hug their friends, but that is not possible at this time. We will help them find other ways to share their joy at being back together again.

Each one of us must do our part to help keep our community healthy. That is why we encourage all grade 7 and 8 students to take a COVID self-test on Monday, January 10 and remind you that if your child tests positive, they should remain at home. 

Your child should also stay home if they have any flu-like symptoms (fever, cough, runny nose, sore throat, or temperature above 37.8).

We will follow the 5K measures on campus (you can review them here) to ensure our community’s continued health and well-being. We expect everyone to comply with the following measures:

  • Submit daily health declaration
  • Wear a mask at all times
  • Wash or sanitize hands immediately upon entering and exiting a classroom, as well as sanitize shared surfaces (desks, tables, and chairs, etc.)   
  • Maintain social distancing throughout the campus
  • Avoid exceeding the allowed group sizes   

SCHEDULE/ROUTINES

    • New Daily Schedule:  We will continue to follow the virtual school class schedule with small modifications. Middle school students must enter campus between 7:30 and 7:50 and must depart campus between 3:00 and 3:15.  Early entry to campus is not permitted.  
  • New Hallway Routines:  Students must walk on the right side of the hallways in a single file, spaced out.  Students are not allowed to stop or congregate. The hallways are only to be used for movement between classes.
  • Advisory and Structured Study Time:  We will have a 40-minute advisory or structured study hall every day. We will be using this time to support students in many ways.
  • New Cafeteria Routines:  The cafeteria is fully set to accommodate lunch using social distancing and plexiglass dividers. Students may bring their lunch from home or purchase set lunch, noodles, and sandwich bar in the cafeteria. No food deliveries will be allowed at any time.
    • Breaks, passing times, and “play” areas:  We have to adjust how we use shared spaces like the gym, Dragon’s Den, and library. These areas are set up to ensure we meet social distancing requirements and to limit group sizes. We will help students understand what activities are allowed (for example, no contact sports will be allowed in the gyms).
    • Band Class: Students should bring their instruments back to school on Wednesday, January 12 in order to be prepared for their music classes. No special masks required. We will be using social distancing to ensure a safe environment for this class.
    • Vietnamese Class: There will not be Vietnamese class on Wednesday, January 12.  More information about Vietnamese class will be provided next week.
    • ASAs and Athletics: After school activities and athletics are not approved at this time.  However, we will seek out ways to include them in a modified format during the regular school day.
  • Bussing: A sign-up email for our bussing service, along with payment details was sent to parents earlier this week. If you have questions, please contact Ms. Vy Tran, vytran@ssis.edu.vn.

STUDENTS OUTSIDE HCMC

We are committed to continuing to provide a high-quality virtual learning program for our students who are not currently in HCMC allowing them to connect and engage in the learning virtually.  These students will attend synchronously in the virtual environment.  Students enrolled in our Remote Learning Program will also continue to be supported as a remote student.  

On behalf of the entire middle school faculty and staff, I want to share how excited we are to have students back on campus.  We are so happy to be able to learn in person together.  Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions you may have about the reopening of campus.

Kind regards,

Molly Burger

Middle School Principal