Schools are back and facing communication challenges as students and staff begin to test positive for the Omicron variant of COVID-19.
Here is our ‘Be Ready at RED’ checklist:
Ensure you have all the appropriate groups set up in your SMS/School-links: School-links will import groups from your SMS, meaning that you can direct communications to individual classes, year groups, staff, even sports teams, as required.
Check that all of your leadership team have the Emergency ALERTS app downloaded onto their phones: this empowers your team to quickly and easily send communications out in the evening or at weekends to the whole school or groups, even if they are isolating.
Run through your communication plan with your team: in the event of a case at your school the Ministry of Health will send you information to forward to parents/students via email. We advise that you use the communication tools you have available as follows:
Text: use text for important alerts and to direct your community to more detailed information provided in email, app and on Facebook if appropriate.
Emails and data-push (app): share ongoing communications that are lengthy and potentially need to be kept for reference e.g. dates of when to do Day 3 and Day 5 tests etc.
Facebook: use Facebook for announcements and information that applies to the whole school community or very clearly stipulate who you are targeting. There is a chance caregivers can read something on the feed whilst multi-tasking (as we all do!) and assume it applies to their student, when it does not. This could cause confusion. It can also be difficult for some to track down posts again to refer back.
Target: always use the group feature where possible, targeting your communications to the relevant classes and year groups. You could be sending a lot of information out over the next few weeks and you don’t want parents/caregivers to start dismissing it as not applying to them.