Good morning all,
As this would have been the start of the Easter holidays, we would recommend that you make sure you and the children have some downtime over the next fortnight. We will continue to send the challenges out as this is fun learning, and please do keep sharing all your activities on the Class Teams.
The staff will also be taking a break for some of the time and will therefore not be holding the twice-weekly class meets, but will check in on their class chats from time to time. Of course, the children are welcome to keep messaging one another: we love seeing what they are up to. The school office email will be checked regularly for any urgent queries.
Many of of the staff are working in the Georgetown Hub in order to provide childcare for children of key workers. I would remind you that this is emergency childcare, and should only be used as a last resort.
Some parents were in touch to say that they were running out of books! Please find a Literacy ideas sheet attached from the staff to help with this. I would also recommend Penguin Kids, Oxford Owl and Audible online, who are sharing lots of e-books and audiobooks for free during the school closures. I am also loving World of Walliams and Moat Brae who are doing daily storytimes online: great stories and great voices!
This Weekend’s Why Don’t You is attached- have fun!
lots of love Mrs Gamble xx
It may not feel like it, but it is the weekend.
Every Friday, we will be sending you a Weekend Why Don’t You: this is a suggestion for a weekend activity for learning in a different way.
This weekend’s Why Don’t You was emailed to parents today, but you can also find a copy here: weekend why dont you
Every Wednesday, we will be asking you to carry out a Calside
Kindness. These tasks are designed to help in the community,
for all those people who are staying inside to be safe in order to
spread a bit of Calside Cheer.
Please send your replies via email to your class teacher. We will then send them on.
Please see update from the Council posted on Facebook with regard to the childcare arrangements for children of key workers.
Arrangements for Schools
Closing schools and nursery settings is an important part of our efforts to control the spread of COVID-19.
From Monday 23 March, what we deliver within our school buildings is changing to support our communities – while pupils and teachers are working in different ways, school buildings will be open to provide childcare (From Primary 1 to S6) for those providing critical services in response to COVID-19. The Government has asked us to keep the opening of physical settings to the minimum so we are asking you to help us in ensuring those attending are those that truly need it in order to support the local and national response.
We will have all 16 Secondary School buildings across our region open from 9am until 3pm to provide childcare (From Primary 1 to S6) to those whose parents absolutely have to go to work to respond to COVID-19 and cannot use one of the providers listed on our website –https://www.dumgal.gov.uk/…/Childcare-Information-for-KEY-W…
A meal service will be available to purchase for all children and young people attending. In addition, for those in receipt of free School Meals these will be provided from all secondary schools from 12.30pm-2pm.
The Scottish Government has designated those who are eligible to access services at our schools. However, we are working with local employer stakeholders to ensure that any staff who work in critical businesses in our local communities are also included. We will publish over the next few days a clear list of critical local staff in addition to the current Scottish Government list. You can see the current national list of who is eligible to access services by visiting – https://www.gov.scot/…/coronavirus—school-and-elc-closur…/
It is important to remember that this is part of the effort to reduce social contact and we would ask you to help us to ensure this service is only used by those who need it.
Young people who are self-isolating or who have underlying medical conditions should not attend.
As you will appreciate this is a really unique situation which has also affected a number of key Council staff some of whom will have the same childcare challenges. The arrangements being put in place on Monday are temporary until Wednesday to give us time to redeploy our resources in order that we can have a wider service operating from Thursday. This will include some of our Primary Schools opening and we ask for your patience as we make these arrangements.
We are committed to ensuring that no child or young person will go hungry. If you need help with food provision you can contact us discreetly by emailing SkillsEducationandLearningCOVID19@dumgal.gov.uk or by calling 030 33 33 3000 and we will make arrangements to ensure we can provide you with food.
We thank everyone for their support and understanding as we all work together in our communities to support each other.
I am sure that you are all fully aware of the current health crisis, and the consequences that have led to the First Minister’s decision to close all schools from the end of the school day on Friday 20th March.
Staff have been working for some weeks to create home learning packs for you to use at this time. A paper copy of this will be enclosed in the maildrop, will be emailed to you via the Groupcall system, will be shared with each class’ Microsoft Team and is attached below. These starter packs have been created to support you with the children’s learning while school is closed. You will see that there are activities for all areas of the curriculum, and we have tried to plan for families to make this easier. I would recommend a balance of screen time, creative time and some calming time, but I am sure you will judge this dependent on your own children! I would advise that you try to make the learning fun, as we don’t want the children to remember this as a scary time.
The staff will also be setting extra activities while the school continues to be closed, and these will be shared via email and the class Microsoft Team. You will find guidance on the Microsoft Team in the maildrop, and is also shared below this post. The teachers will also be available via their email for support.
We are working to set up some virtual sessions to give the children the chance to see their friends: this has posed some technological challenges which we are working through with D&G council. If we manage to get these sorted, we will alert you of these via email.
You will find a note of your child’s logon details enclosed within the maildrop. You will also find a reminder of the staff emails so that you can contact the teachers for advice. Staff will be accessing their emails regularly, as long as they are well enough to do so. However not all the school data will be able to be accessed remotely so we may not be able to answer all queries: we will however try our best!
We will keep you apprised of any updates that we have, when these are forthcoming from D&G or from Scottish Government. This will include any date for school re-opening.
We look forward to all being back together soon, and trust that the Calside Community will pull together as always.
Louisa Gamble, Head Teacher.
Home learning pack here: Calside Home learning Pack
Guidance on Microsoft Teams: Accessing Teams at home
I wanted to write to all families to confirm the message from the First Minister earlier this afternoon that schools and nurseries across Scotland will close from the end of the school day on Friday. I will provide more detail on how we plan to support you and your family during this very difficult time as soon as this information becomes available.
We will send all information directly to Headteachers and will ensure that all Council communication channels (Website, Facebook and Twitter) are updated with the latest information for you.
If you are a worker within Health and Social Care or the Emergency Services, or if you have a senior phase pupil preparing for exams, targeted information will follow.
We ask that you continue to remain in contact with your school and your Headteacher if you have any concerns at all. Thank you for your support as we work through this difficult time.
Dr Gillian Brydson
Director Skills, Education and Learning
Dumfries and Galloway Council
122-124 Irish Street, Dumfries DG1 2PB
Drop Point: 225
We are closely monitoring the ever evolving picture around COVID 19; following NHS, National and Local Government advice. At this time there are no known confirmed cases of Coronavirus in our school. If you or your child develop a high fever / CV symptoms, you should contact NHS 111 before bringing a child into school to minimise possible risk. We will, of course, inform you of any further information when we receive it.
Ruby Rocks – 40 Year celebration
This year we turned 40 and would like to celebrate this exciting event. The pupil council are busy organising several events for all to enjoy.
Our first activity is a “40 hour activity challenge” in which we are challenging each pupil to complete 40 hours of activity in the month of April to fundraise for our school (more information will follow).
The whole school is currently busy drawing self-portraits which will feature on a tea towel and canvas bag. These will be available to buy for £5 each. When we have received the digital proof of the items we will put it on the school website to be viewed.
Our final celebration will be an open afternoon in which parents/families are invited to join us for a picnic. There will be performances from each class and a range of fun activities to participate in.
During this afternoon we would like to display photographs from over the years. If you or any friends/family members have any photos they could kindly donate for the event, please send them to the school office in an envelope addressed to Miss Brown, with a pupil contact so they can be returned after the event.
We can’t wait to celebrate this momentous occasion with you all.
from Calside Pupil Council and Miss Brown