April 28th, 2020.
I hope you are all well and staying safe in these most difficult times that are upon us. The Management team here at Johnstown Girls’ National School have continued to convene and review the processes by which school work is allocated to our pupils by their teachers.
Schoolwork will continue to be posted online fortnightly, as this is how teachers plan for blocks of work when in school. Under our school Health and Wellbeing Programme, we have a new Wellbeing section on the school website, where ideas for baking, physical education, Music Generation lessons and other entertaining programmes will be made available for the children’s education in general.
We have discussed the possibility of offering online classes and assessed the risks associated with this form of learning and teaching. Children must be supervised by a responsible adult at all times when accessing online content. For the reasons as set here, I propose that we continue with the current programme. The decision is based, first and foremost, on providing educational content equally for all our pupils. We know that in many home parents are trying to work from home and would be unavailable to supervise classes, devices are not readily available for all, and poor connectivity is an issue nationally.
The Children First Act imposes strenuous responsibilities on all adults coming into contact with children and the unintended consequences of children being exposed to unsuitable online content is a major consideration that we must be conscious of. We know of many examples of issues that have happened in the last few weeks with online teaching.
Stay safe and keep well.
Chairman of the Board of Management.