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Distance Learning extended to Wednesday 6 May

Continuation of Distance Learning

In the last 24hrs (2 April) circumstances related to COVID-19 have changed in our region, in Japan and within the Japanese Council of International Schools (JCIS). For the safety and health of the students, the families and the staff, KIS will extend Distance Learning to Wednesday 6 May (end of Golden Week). This decision was made following an informed discussion with the Senior Leadership Team and the Board Chair. It is a decision made in light of the increasing spread of COVID-19 within Kyoto City and Prefecture; the extension of closure for Japanese public schools in Osaka, Tokyo, Fukuoka, and Kanagawa; and the extension of most JCIS schools offering Distance Learning until at least May 6.

Schedule

  • Monday 6 April – Student Free Day – teachers will plan the pathway of learning for this extended Distance Learning (teachers will deliver a pre-recorded morning message that morning)
  • Tuesday 7 April – Distance Learning resumes
  • Wednesday 29 April – Public Holiday (Showa Day) no Distance Learning
  • Monday 4 May – Wednesday 6 May Golden Week no Distance Learning 
  • Thursday 7 May – Re-entry to KIS (if circumstances the students to re-enter that are healthy and safe)
  • Monday 25 May – normal school day (cancelation of KIS festival)

Cancellations

  • Wednesday 22 April – Friday 24 April Hanase Camp G1-G5 
  • Wednesday 22 April – Friday 24 April Discovering Hiroshima  G6-G8
  • Sunday 24 May – KIS Festival

Distance Learning Update 25 March

Welcome to today’s Distance Learning Update. 

Healthy Choices
The weather in Kyoto is extremely pleasant over spring. The temptation is to socialise. Please exercise healthy caution at this time. It is important that everybody continue to practice social distancing practices; continued focus on personal hyigene; and maintain a healthy lifetstyle (good nutrition, water intake, plenty of sleep, sunlight and exercise). Research is suggesting these factors will reduce the risk assocaited with coronavirus

Challenge Day
Mr Boyd and Mr Taylor are extremly excited about the Challenge Day this Friday. We will be sending out the links tomorrow. Parents are ecnouraged to be part of the day. It is a good chance to end this term with a celebration of resilence, creativity and fun.

Travel intentions
This weeks Parent Survey will include a question asking parents to indicate if they are travelling overseas at Spring Break, and if so to where. Once again, these are precautionary measures to maintain the health of the entire community.

Re-entry plans
KIS is developing plans to re-enter school on April 6. Supporting information will be available shortly. Be prepared to take regular temperatures; hygiene procedures; and reduced interactions are some of the areas that will be addressed.

Distance Learning Update 24 March

Greetings everyone and happy Tuesday,

Friday – Challenge Day
Today we started promoting Challenge Day which is this Friday. There will will not be the normal schedule of lessons. Instead students will complete challenges for House Points and post the evidence (photos/videos) on SeeSaw. Mr Boyd and Mr Taylor will live stream during the day, with updates. 

Travel Restrictions
The Japanese Government included USA on the mandatory self quarantine list for Japanese and Non- Japanese travellers returning to Japan. Full details can be found at  https://www.japan.travel/en/coronavirus/

KIS will apply these same guidelines for all listed countries, to all families and staff in regards travel both during and outside of spring break (on returning to school April 6).

Re-entry to school
The school in conjunction with JCIS and the Ministry of Education is developing return to school protocols to support the safest and healthiest environment possible. Some things to think about will be daily temperature checks prior to coming to school; restricted access to the campus; increased hygiene procedures; and management of large groups. Full details will be sent out during the week.

Home-School Connect
Don’t forget to reach out to the teachers, this week. They are eager to talk about how your son or daughter is progressing since the beginning of the year. As we can’t hold face-to-face conferences, this is our next best solution.

Have a good evening

Distance Learning Update 23 March

Greetings everyone and welcome to the last week of Term Two. 

This week there are many activities for the community to involve themselves in. KIS hope you all take advantage of these and the great weather.

Literacy Week 
Keep and eye out for the daily updates about Literacy Week. Ms Galina has a created some great experiences to grow through library activities and interactive read a-louds at lunchtime.  

Home-School Connect
Parents, this is the week to connect with teachers and talk about student progress in class since the beginning of Term Two. Make the initial contact through email and then every family can have a ‘virtual’ one-on-one with the teacher (Might be using Google, or Zoom, or Skype, or good old fashioned telephone). 

Challenge Friday
We are putting the final challenges together for our big day on Friday. As this would have been KIS Olympics we have re-modelled the day so students can earn house points in a variety of ways. KIS will also be live streaming during the day giving points updates and showcasing student achievements. 

Japanese Council of International Schools updates
JCIS met on Friday morning and discussed the information from the Thursday night (19 March) news bulletin. 95% of JCIS will return to normal lessons on the 30 March or 6 April. This is consistent with directions from the government.

International Baccalaureate
Today at 5pm the IB cancelled this years IB Diploma Exams, affecting around 200 000 students. Our thoughts and best wishes go out to all the students, parents and teachers at this time. 

Departing families
If you are a departing family at the end of Term Two, please complete the sign out forms, return your library books and other other school material you may have. Please contact your teacher, who will also assist you in transitioning from KIS. All other inquires through to admissions@kis.ac.jp 

Remember wash those hands and keep a safe distance.

Distance Learning Update 18 March

The Distance Learning groove is well underway. I monitor what’s happening in the classes and not surprisingly students are engaged and and challenged. In this week’s Newsletter (coming out tomorrow – not Friday), I have included more images from the wonderful effort that is being made to make Distance Learning a success, given the circumstances. 

Government discuss reopening schools
The article gives some insight into what Prime Minister Abe may talk about in tomorrow nights address: 
https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20200317_32/

Travel in the spring break
Those of you considering travel during the Spring Break may need to heed the changes (almost daily) to where you can travel and more importantly the implications for when you return:
 https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20200318_16/

This news should be considered in conjunction with the Travel Quarantine Q&A that was shared from the Ministry of Health with the community

Home-School Connect
Please reach out to the teachers, next week especially. They are eager to talk about how your son or daughter is progressing since the beginning of the year. As we can’t hold face-to-face conferences, this is our next best solution.

Term Three
Planning is well underway for a return to school for Term Three. The landscape will naturally look different, given the change in health and safety procedures but the school is working on ways to further support the community. Stay tuned.

Distance Learning Update 17 March

Magnificent weather, albeit with a cold start, today. So please make use of this time to get some mindfulness time in as a family or individual. Get away from the Distance Learning for a time and enjoy one reason why we are so lucky to live in Kyoto.

FAQs Distance Learning
Hopefully the document sent out last night helps to answer some of the community’s questions. This is a working document, and as more questions arise, these will be added into this document. Once, again your input is crucial to KIS, and support such as the FAQ document come as a result of your feedback. 

Home-School Connect
Starting Monday 23 March through to Thursday 26 March parents are encouraged to connect with the teachers. As KIS cannot hold the normal Student Led Conferences, the teachers wanted to offer the parents a chance to talk about their child and how they are progressing in class. It is a great chance to chat about how students are developing in class, since the beginning of Term Two.  Feel free to reach out to your teachers.

Flexibility in Distance Learning
One question raised about Distance Learning, is how flexible the parents can be in its delivery? As flexible as what works for your home situation, is the answer. The teachers are more than aware of the different challenges every household faces. So if you or the students need time to complete other things during school time, this still works. Students can catch the school work up later but will be expected to complete all tasks. Let your teacher know, so they understand your situation as well. 

Prime Minister Abe‘s announcement
On Thursday 19 March, Prime Minister Abe will complete his 10 day follow up review since the school closures on 9 March. KIS will be monitoring this announcement to help guide the school’s planning. Mr Taylor will be on a conference call with the Japanese International School Heads on Friday morning. As a collective we are all waiting for positive news to guide next steps.

Continuation of Distance Learning

Following on from a meeting with the Japanese Council of International Schools, the Board Chair and the Senior Leadership Team, KIS will continue Distance Learning until 27 March. 

It is the school’s intention to return to face to face lesson on the Monday 6 April. This is reliant on no further government directives or negative changes in the environment. 

This is not a decision we make lightly but it is a decision made with the health of the entire KIS community as a priority.  

Further reinforcing this decision is the recent cases of COVID-19 in a Kyoto daycare centre and the cancelling of all IB workshops in Osaka in March.  

As a school we will continue to try and support the community any way we can. If we can offer alternatives to the school community, we will communicate this immediately. Some opportunities we are looking to provide are more experiences in the Virtual Library; and Parent Teacher Conferences (virtual).

Tomorrow the Week 2 Parent Survey goes out. Please let us know about your experience. 

Distance Learning Update 6 March

Greetings all,

It’s been a great week of experiences and developing skills. The students are learning in news ways and gaining increased agency. Pleasingly there is a level of ‘fun’ evident.

Whilst we have no updates on what the future looks like, we will continue to operate our Distance Learning platform next week.

On Wednesday 11 March, the school will send out the a plan for continuity of learning for the week starting Monday 16 March. Thus allowing the community to better prepare. 

So, it is Distance Learning on Monday 9 March. Check ins starting from 0830am.

Have a good weekend and well done to everyone in the KIS community.

Best

Michael     

Moving to Distance Learning

The Japanese Prime Minister announced school closures due to COVID-19 on Thursday 27 February.

KIS is open for a normal school day on Monday 2 March as are all other Kyoto Public Schools. On Tuesday 3 March KIS will move to Distance Learning for ALL students, until further notice. 

The school is NOT open for parents, students and or visitors unless previously organised through the Head of School. Stay healthy and safe.