Frequently Asked Questions

COVID-19

Further to the announcement by the Ministry of Education of the resumption of education in Luxembourg and in consultation with them the plan to return to school for St George’s staff and students will start with Secondary school on 18th May and for Primary on 25th May.

The school half term holiday planned for the week beginning 25th May will be postponed until 1st June in line with the state schools and enable St George’s to assess the return of the Primary school on the 25th for one week and make any adjustments accordingly. All public holidays will be respected as usual.

If you have any further questions that are not answered in this list please contact principalpa@st-georges.lu. We will collate all additional questions and update this list weekly or as required.

Resources:

Why are the holidays being changed?

By moving the holiday we comply with the Ministry of Education requirements and fall in line with the state plans for re-entry for the Primary schools. This also allows the school to evaluate the procedures following the re-entry of Secondary and then a week later for Primary. View the updated term calendar here.

Our children have not been in school for weeks why don’t you cancel the holiday instead?

Whilst we have not been teaching on school premises during the last weeks the teachers have been working extremely hard during this time to prepare and provide bespoke remote teaching and delivering excellent learning for the students. This means long days for staff. This conforms to the employment law requirements relating to the wellbeing of our own staff.

When will classes resume onsite?

18th May 2020 – Secondary school – Years 7-10

25th May 2020 – Primary School – Reception to Year 6, all students

Why will the Secondary school only start on 18th May not 11th May like the state schools?

In order to ensure the social distancing measures as prescribed are adhered to and to reschedule teachers, create new timetables and adjust the curricula all takes time. We will need to re-organise classrooms and install additional health & safety facilities.

What about Years 11-13?

These students will remain at home working remotely for the rest of the school year. These year groups would normally be on examination leave for the remainder of the year. We will work with Year 11 students to ensure that their preparation work for Sixth Form is bought forward and their subject choices for Year 12 can be discussed remotely. Year 12 students will begin work on syllabus content for Year 13 courses. Class teachers for these year groups are preparing submissions to examination boards in lieu of the actual examinations.

Will they return on alternate weeks like the state schools?

No. St George’s has planned for the return of all students mentioned above. Classes in Primary will be split into two rooms, the teacher will be in one classroom and a second staff member in the other. The Teacher will alternate each week with the classes. Teachers will plan the lessons and ensure this is taught across the whole class.

What will the school hours be?

School will be open from 8.00am as usual, registration will be 8:30am and School will finish at 12.35 for the whole school. Students will be picked up from 12.35 until 13.00 when the school will close.

 

Will there be school lunches?

No. There will be no canteen facilities available. Snacks should be provided by parents each day. Please remember we are a nut free school!

Will there be break times?

Yes. To ensure the students are safe and socially distanced there will be staggered break times and designated play areas for all year groups.

Are parents allowed into school?

No. For health reasons we will restrict visits to school and that includes the main reception office. The only exception will be if a parent has a scheduled appointment or emergency that cannot be substituted by videoconferencing or telephone.

Will there be parent assemblies?

No.

Will students have assemblies?

No. The numbers for assemblies will be too large. It may be possible to provide assemblies by videoconferencing in the same way as during lockdown but this will be announced to students and parents.

Why will Nursery not re-start on site?

It will not be possible to ensure safe social distancing of the Nursery students. Their learning environment is based on free flow, constructive play and interactions. St George’s will provide online activities and regular contact with these students and parents remotely. These measures are for the safety of students, their families and staff.

Can I keep my child at home?

Education is compulsory for children from Reception to 16 years. The Ministry of Education has instructed the School to ensure all students who do not attend school to be registered as “Unauthorised Absence” unless provided with a medical certificate advising that the student or their family must remain at home. No exceptional home learning will be offered to those choosing to remain at home without authorisation.

Will there be school buses?

Yes from the 25th May on wards. Students will be required to wear masks on the bus. Before entering the bus they will have their temperature checked. If they have a raised temperature they will not be permitted to attend school and parents will be asked to take their child home.

NB A survey will be sent to all parents/students currently using the bus service to determine the number per bus.

 

NB A survey will be sent to all parents/students currently using the bus service to determine the number per bus. 

Kiss and Fly

This will still operate.

What measures will school take to ensure staff and students are well and can attend school?

All students and staff will have their temperature taken by non-invasive thermal screening devices when they enter the school. If they have a temperature exceeding 37.5C they will not be permitted to remain and parents will be asked to take their children home.

The government has indicated widespread testing will become available and in particular for those in education: staff and students. Anyone who has a positive test will not be allowed to enter school.

Shared resources could lead to cross contamination. What provisions will be made for this?

All students will be asked to come to school with their own pencil case (pens, pencils, crayons etc). Sharing of materials in class will be kept to a minimum and very regular hand washing and use of sanitisers will be encouraged.

Will the school be cleaned regularly?

Yes. The school is always cleaned each day after the students have left the premises. This will continue and our cleaning service will be providing a further deep cleaning and disinfectant procedure daily, focussing especially on areas of frequent use e.g. door handles, toilets and tables and chairs in classrooms amongst others.

Are the school nurses trained in infection control?

Yes. Our school nurses are all fully qualified, registered nurses. They are up-to-date with all infection control procedures and regularly train staff on these as well as first aid. The nurses will be monitoring all classes and staff for any signs or symptoms of the virus or any other infections too.

The nurses, as front line essential employees, will be provided with additional PPE (personal protection equipment) and will ensure safety measures at all times.

Temperature checking will delay entry to school. Will there be a safe queuing system to get into school? What happens if it rains?

There will be a queuing system in operation. The Main Gate (1) and Primary Playground Gate (2) will be used for entry. The rear access via the turnstile will not be used. This may slow down entry and therefore students will have to wait outside the entry gates. The school will provide temporary cover in case of rain.

What happens if a student or staff member tests positive to COVID-19?

The individual will be quarantined and contact tracing will be undertaken by the Ministry of Health. It is possible others will be quarantined. This does not mean the school will be closed.

What about swimming and sports lessons?

These will be suspended until the end of the school year.

Will music lessons and choirs resume?

No. the government has instructed schools to suspend these activities. Individual music lessons will continue as they have been doing under the lockdown. Music teachers will arrange times directly with the student/parent but not be during 8.00-13.00 when students will be in classes on site. Year 11-13 will not be on site at all so lessons may be taught at any mutually agreed time with the music teacher.

What will happen about exams?

The external international exams in Secondary will not take place. All students and parents that this concerns have been informed and measures are in place to ensure students will receive grades from the exam boards. These will be announced in August as normal.

Secondary students from Year 7-10 will still take subject examinations – dates for these will be announced in due course.

Primary students will not sit PiEs and PiMs.

Will there be graduation ceremonies for Year 6 and Year 13?

These have been postponed. We hope to re-schedule these for students and their families in September before or at the start of term. Please look out for updated information on the website and school app.

Will remote home learning continue for those students who remain at home?

No. Teachers will not be able to provide both classroom teaching and remote learning for those who choose to remain at home. Only students who have been designated and medically confirmed as vulnerable or with vulnerable members of their household are currently allowed to stay at home. Homework will be provided for these students and where possible some SeeSaw (primary) or Teams (secondary) work will be set.

Will all staff return to school?

Not necessarily. Some staff may themselves be designated vulnerable or have vulnerable members of their household and therefore be unable to return to school. These staff will be asked to participate and support learning in other ways.

What if a teacher is ill?

School will ensure cover for any teacher who is off sick – in the same way as before the coronavirus crisis.

Will after school care (ASC) and Clubs resume too?

No. This is not permitted for the rest of this school year.

There is no canteen. Will I get the lunches reimbursed? What about other extra-curricular activities I have already paid for?

Credit notes are being issued to all parents for any pre-payments of services that St George’s has not been able to fulfil during this period and for the rest of the term. These may be deducted from the next tuition fee installments or extras bills. Please ensure you quote the relevant details in any payment or correspondence.

My child has not been in school for weeks. Why are we still paying full tuition fees?

Teachers have been providing lessons remotely and are fully employed with the work this entails. A 15 minute lesson online can take at least an hour to prepare. Marking and sharing responses to each student takes time. St George’s teaching methods are bespoke, active learning is the method of instruction and generic work sheets are not often used.

How can I limit the chances (and my children’s chances) of contracting the Coronavirus?

 As individuals, we can best protect ourselves by taking basic protective measures against the virus:

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and water or clean them with an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid highly crowded spaces if possible, particularly if someone shows signs of illness;

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
If you do show symptoms call the Emergency hotline from the Luxembourg Government Tel. 8002 8080, they will be able to help if you have any questions or concerns.

How can current parents/staff get in touch with St George’s if they are concerned or have specific questions?

For the latest updates, please visit:

www.st-georges.lu/news

- The Parent Portal ‘COVID-19’ tab

- School calendars available on the School app and Parent Portal.

For enquiries, please email:

- reception@st-georges.lu

For urgent enquiries, please call:
- Tel. +352 42 32 24 

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

The virus can cause mild, flu-like symptoms such as:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Muscle pain
  • Tiredness

More serious cases develop severe pneumonia, acute respiratory distress syndrome, sepsis and septic shock that can lead to death.

Are some people more at risk than others?

Generally elderly people and those with underlying health conditions (e.g. hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease and cancer) are considered to be more at risk of developing severe symptoms.

Does the school get any special coronavirus subsidy from the government?

No. No subsidy has been made available to the school to date.

What barrier measures are implemented to protect the health of students and staff?

Upon return, distancing and hygiene measures will be introduced to ensure maximum protection for all children and staff. These include:

  • respecting an interpersonal distance of 2 metres (through the reorganisation of classrooms, the orientation of flows in the corridors, the phasing of breaks, etc.);
  • the compulsory wearing of masks that cover the nose and mouth in situations of interpersonal contact when the 2-metre safety distance cannot be guaranteed. The necessary equipment is provided by the Ministry;
  • the compulsory use of masks on public and school transport (keeping the mask on during the entire school journey is mandatory);
  • in classrooms, where this distance can easily be respected because of the reduction in the number of students in attendance, wearing a mask is not compulsory and remains optional;
  • maintaining stable class groups, in order to avoid groups mixing and interacting with each other:
  • regular hand washing;
  • the provision of hand sanitizers in every classroom and at the entrance(s) of the school building;
  • a plan for the circulation of students within the school premises;
  • a plan for alternated breaks and play time;
  • the closure of the canteen.

Who are you (St George’s) taking your advice from?

St George’s takes its advice from the The Ministry of Health in Luxembourg. We are in close communication with the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education in Luxembourg and our St George’s Senior Leadership Team meet on a regular basis to review the situation.

Will my school fees be reduced?

No. During this on-going extraordinary situation running the school, paying salaries and maintaining the infrastructure has continued. No staff have been furloughed as, instructed by the government, schools are not permitted to do so. All our staff have been working remotely, or coming into school to maintain and prepare the facilities for return. Some savings on water and electricity are offset by the increased cost of additional measures to protect students and staff on the return to school.

How can I reassure my child/ren at home?

Remember to keep calm. Having calm, panic-free conversations about the virus can ease emotions around these changes. Check-in on how your child is feeling acknowledge, and address their worries.

It is also important to be careful of how COVID-19 is explained to your child/ren to avoid any people feeling blamed / singled out and to communicate that if someone has a fever or cough that does not mean this person has the virus.

SEESAW: Everything you need to know about Home Learning: Year 1-6

Remote Learning for Primary students:

We are using Seesaw to set Homework weekly and as a Home Learning digital tool (See document here: Seesaw for Parents).

As a family member, you can already access the Journal of your child through Seesaw Family App. You are currently able to review and comment your child's learning in Class.

We have created a second classroom called Home Learning where each student in Primary can log in at home (using a computer or a tablet) and answer assignments/activities.

In order to answer Homework or answer Daily activities, please follow these steps:

1- Connect to www.seesaw.me and log in as Student or Download Seesaw Class on your tablet (not SEESAW FAMILY)

Student email address: xxxxxxx@students.st-georges.lu

Password: Xxxxxx (contact primary admin if not received)

2-Select HomeLearning Classroom (e.g. 05U-Homelearning, 03H-Homelearning…)

3-Check Activities and only answer the activities "Waiting for Response"

4-Please follow your Teacher's instructions, you will have to either answer on Seesaw OR your exercise book.

Reminder: Homework for Maths, English, French and Luxembourgish will be posted weekly.

                 

 

      

 

St George’s International School, Luxembourg ASBL | 11, rue des Peupliers | L-2328 Luxembourg | Phone: +352 42 32 24
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