We are now at the end of another week of online, at home learning. While I have been struck, as I always am, by how amazing our students are, the single-minded determination of our staff and the wonderful support of our parents – this week has been one where many of us will have seen our eyes drawn towards events around the world.
The rapid spread of the Covid-19 virus to country after country has been incredibly hard to watch, especially for an international community such as ours.
We are, of course, a few weeks ahead of the situation that these countries are now facing. While we are still absolutely adhering to the social distancing measures put in place by the HK Government – and our schools remain closed to students, we are already starting to put plans in place for how we might welcome your children back to school once the current suspension is lifted.
As you know, the earliest that we might be able to get students back into their classroom is at the end of the upcoming holidays. Easter is a time when, traditionally, many of our families leave Hong Kong on vacation. While this chance to relax, unwind and recharge the batteries after a difficult year is welcome – having so many people travelling around the world at this time does bring with it some challenges.
We have already begun planning how we ensure that our staff are all safely back in Hong Kong and ready to work at the start of the new term. And, as you would expect, we are also looking at how we make sure that, when our schools are able to reopen, that we have a strict regime in place to keep everyone safe and well.
We will be asking people to follow Government regulations on quarantine following travel, we will be asking families to make medical declarations to us and we will ensure that students and staff who are unwell cannot access our schools. I want to assure you that a great deal of thought is being given to planning this at the moment – and a great amount of effort will go into putting those plans in place before we reopen our schools.
This is something that we have been able to effectively rehearse over the past few weeks as we have welcomed small groups of senior students into our schools either for oral exams, to complete practical coursework or to take part in study groups. Nothing matters more to us than the safety and wellbeing of your children.
As always, the key thing I want to say to you is, simply, thank you. I know how challenging these times are, and I know the impact that this current period is having on your lives. Everyone at ESF is there for you – so, please, if there is anything we can do to support you – just get in touch.
Chief Executive Officer