Kawhia School - Te Kura o Kawhia - Kaua e mutu kere noa iho


COVID-19 Updates

Information our school has officially received from the Secretary for Education, Iona Holsted that you might find informative and relevant. While there is a lot of discussion and speculation in the media and other sources regarding education during the Covid-19 pandemic, schools are required to follow the direction of the Secretary for Education.

COVID-19 update

Wednesday, 13 May 2020


 Kia ora e te whānau

From next Monday, 18 May 2020, the government has deemed it safe for all students and staff to return to school at Alert Level 2. 

We really look forward to catching up with all your children and getting back into the routine of school. For that reason, we will be very protective of your children for the first two weeks. That means we won’t be sending them to manual (change from original plans) and there will be no volunteers or other visitors scheduled to visit. Our teachers asked for this so they can spend time with your children to re-establish relationships, routines and monitor their wellbeing as they transition back to school life. 

The school bus will be operating for all bus students.

For those of you who are uncertain about sending your child back to school or if there is another underlying reason (eg health), please let me know so we can work out a planned transition back to school. This could mean starting with just a few mornings or days at school. 

If you’re wondering whether to send your child back to school, a good measure is to ask yourself if your family has already broken its bubble and met with other families. If your child has had contact with others outside your immediate bubble, then it is more than safe for your child to return to school.

Whaea Roimata is currently stuck in Invercargill. She is closely monitoring when flights will be available for her to return but it could be early next week. This means some students may be with a different teacher for the first few days. 

Borrowed Computers and Laptops

  • If you have borrowed a school computer or laptop, please return them THIS FRIDAY, 15th May to Kāwhia School from 10am onwards. You will need to sign the register at the school entrance.

Government Issued Devices

  • If your child has received a device to use, please send them to school with your child so they can continue to learn with it at school

 Ka kite koutou a tērā wiki – see you next week

Leanne Apiti


The following hygiene and safety practices will be put into place at Kāwhia School while in Alert Level 2:

Contact Tracing

  • ALL parents and visitors will be required to record their name in the Contact Register at the entrance of the school office
  • Parents will only need to record their name and their time in and out of the school, including any classrooms they entered
  • Anyone entering a classroom, including students and staff, will be required to record their name in a Classroom Register at the door entrance


  • Maintaining distancing is not practicable on school buses so there are a few steps the bus company is taking to offer an appropriate level of protection to drivers and students under Alert Level 2
    1. Where the seating configuration on the bus has passenger seats in close proximity to the driver, these seats are not to be used and will be barriered off.
    2. Hand sanitizer is available to driver and students.
    3. Cleaning regimes are to be maintained throughout by the driver.

Physical Distancing

  • There is no rule about physical distancing but 1m should be used as a guide and everyone should be far enough away from each other so that they are not breathing on or touching each other. Practice should be sensible
  • Assemblies are allowed and there is no restrictions on the number of students attending but there should be sufficient distance so that students aren’t touching or breathing directly on each other
  • Because it will be difficult to ensure safe physical distancing in the corridor, children will not be allowed to use it
  • They will need to use the other door on the verandah to enter their classroom. Room 1 and 2 students will need to take their bags into their classrooms.
  • Teachers are able to teach more than one group/class of students
  • Physical distancing of 2 metres is recommended for parents and caregivers, from people they don’t know (to align with public health measures outside the school grounds)
  • Where possible, please drop off and pick up your children off at the gate or wait near the school office maintaining safe distance from others
  • If you are picking up your children earlier, please ensure a staff member is aware and can arrange for your child to meet you at a safe spot 
  • Maintain safe distance at places such as the school office 



  • Schools are not considered to be gatherings under Alert Level 2. Therefore no bubbles and no changes are needed for breaks, start and finish times.
  • Break times can include use of balls, playing on the playground etc
  • Children will be reminded to keep safe distance from each other even during breaks (not breathing on or touching each other)
  • Touch rugby and other high contact sports will not be permitted
  • Extra emphasis will be placed on handwashing or sanitising before and after activities

 Food and Drink

  • Children are to bring their own packed lunch and snacks
  • Because the surfaces of the drinking fountain poses a risk for the transmission of germs it will remain closed, we ask that children bring their own water bottle
  • To minimise multiple contact with surfaces, children will not be able to use the microwave or hot water jug during Alert Level 2 – do not send food to be heated 

Staying Safe

  • Hand sanitiser at entry to classrooms and in shared spaces
  • Regular cleaning of surfaces will take place alongside our usual cleaning schedule
  • Soap, water and hand towels provided in the bathrooms
  • Children reminded about coughing into tissues or elbows, regular cleaning of hands and not touching face as much as possible
  • Children and staff should stay home if they are sick (phone Healthline or doctor and get tested if they have flu-like symptoms)
  • If a sick person comes to school, they will be sent back home
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) such as masks and gloves is not required or recommended as necessary in any educational facility by the Public Health Service


Re-emergence of COVID-19
If a COVID-19 case is identified at a school or kura during Alert Level 2, affected sites will be closed for cleaning and close contact tracing. Instruction should revert back to the distance learning model until the school or kura is cleared to open.