torsdag 2 april 2020

2/4 For legal guardians of children in Norrköping municipality’s compulsory schools


As you all know, our society is currently facing an extraordinary situation. Everyday life has changed, and you can see the effects both in Norrköping, other parts of the country, and the world. Norrköping municipality complies with the directives issued by the national authorities, just as in every other municipality in Östergötland county. When everyday life changes in the way we’ve seen over the last few weeks, our schools also need to make certain changes, sometimes on short notice. We hope that you as legal guardian will forgive this under the circumstances. We wish to share our thoughts on this and provide you with an idea of the measures taken in Norrköping’s compulsory schools.

All students shall reach their goals
In compulsory school, the main focus is for every student to reach their goal. This remains true in times like these. We are working to create the best possible conditions for each student to develop as far as possible. At the same time, we are working towards a good equivalence – meaning that all students’ conditions for learning shall be equally good.
Equivalence may sometimes be perceived as changing for the worse. We understand if you as legal guardian perceive certain changes in this way. Our starting point is the best interest of all children and our objective is for the changes we make to create improved conditions for many children and students.
The following items are important for our decisions on measures and changes:
• Effective achievement of the objectives for each student with the help of successful subject teaching and high attendance
• Sustainable work environment and working situation for our employees over time
• Contribute to reduced spread of infection based on the recommendations issued by the Public Health Agency

Current situation
Many students and employees are home from school and work. Attendance varies between schools and from day to day. This is mainly due to the national guidelines that say you should stay home for mild symptoms, which you might not normally do.
If you wish to help your child who is at home
Students at home with mild symptoms who are alert can do their schoolwork using Google Classroom or work using digital learning materials from home. That way, your child can follow along in classes even if he/she is home with mild symptoms. We also encourage you who have young children to keep up with the reading.
Implemented changes
We wish to describe some of the changes we have implemented on a temporary basis. The changes may look different from school to school and from form to form. It could be that your child’s school situation has already been impacted by these changes. Maybe you will notice them in the future.
We have, among other things, looked at:
Substitute teachers or non-regular teachers Your child may be taught by a different teacher than you’re used to. This is due to extraordinary non-attendance among staff. The school principal may need to reorganise staff so that classes can be held by subject teachers to the greatest extent possible. The Education Office will also assist in arranging for substitutes where the need is great. This could be in the form of other educational staff in the organisation or teaching students. All have been approved as substitute teachers and have provided extracts from the Swedish Police criminal records, which is standard protocol when working in our industry.
Changes to classes Your child may be taught in a different class than usual. This may be a way for a school and a principal to organise subject teaching if many students or teachers are absent.
Classes held at a different location Your child may have had classes at a different school with students from several other schools. This may have changed by now. In order to reduce the spread of contagion, classes are held at the local school to a greater extent. This may mean certain schedule changes or changes to school transport. Swimming lessons at Centralbadet have been cancelled for the spring term. Affected students will receive swimming lessons at a later time.
Attendance and absence We comply with the Public Health Agency’s recommendations and we want all students who are sick to stay at home. This also applies if the children have mild cold symptoms such as the sniffles. If the children are healthy, they should be at school and be taught and educated.
Distance learning There are no national recommendations on distance learning for compulsory schools and we do not know if there will be. Within the Education Office and in schools, we are preparing to provide classes remotely if a recommendation on distance learning is issued for compulsory schools.
At present, regular classes and teaching at our schools are in session. We have received many questions on whether we can provide distance learning parallel with regular classes. This is currently not possible due to high non-attendance among staff. If our staff is going to last throughout spring, they can only teach in one place at a time, and that is in school.
Student Health Services Student Health Services’ work continues as usual and you are free to contact Student Health Services. There is staff on-site, but if anyone in the staff is ill, scheduled appointments may need to be postponed. If that is the case, you as legal guardian will be informed.
Dining hall and physical education The national recommendations say we should avoid large gatherings of students. We do this by, for example, instituting new routines for the dining hall or changing the time slots so there are fewer students eating at the same time. The content of physical education has changed. Instead of activities with a lot of physical contact, students will be doing other activities.
Cleaning In order to help limit the spread of infection, our schools are cleaned more frequently than usual, for example toilets, handles, light switches, and other sensitive surfaces.

On the municipality’s website, you will find more information for you as legal guardian. The page is updated regularly. Information may also be found on the Swedish National Agency for Education’s (Sw. Skolverket) website.

Thank you for understanding that the education for your child may be slightly different at this time, for supporting our staff in their work in doing their utmost to ensure each student has favourable conditions to succeed, and for your invaluable commitment to your child’s schooling.

Sofie Lindén Director of Education Norrköping municipality

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