16 March 2020

Re: Covid-19 Virus Update

Tēnā koutou katoa

As I am sure you are aware, there have been significant developments globally on the Covid-19 virus issue over the past few days.

While the New Zealand Government has yet to make a statement on mass gatherings, many countries have already placed restrictions on public gatherings. The motivation is to slow the virus spread and protect the community. We are expecting an announcement by the Government very soon in regards to this.

The College has two large gatherings planned for tomorrow – the Big Boys’ Breakfast and St Patrick’s Day Mass. While we recognise that these are both major events in the school calendar and much time and effort has already been spent by the Parents’ Association in organising the Big Boys’ Breakfast, our overriding concern is taking the greatest possible care of our College community.

Both these events scheduled for tomorrow would be gatherings of 300-600 people at close quarters for more than an hour.

After discussion with the Senior Leadership Team this morning, the College has decided that whilst important, neither of these events can be considered “essential” to the running of the College or education of your sons. Therefore, we have taken the decision to cancel both events tomorrow. Instead, the College will run a normal Tuesday timetable.

In regards to the Big Boys’ Breakfast the Parents Association will advise the College community of their plans due to the cancellation.

We have also considered our whole school assemblies that occur on most Wednesdays in the College Hall. Again, as a precautionary measure to assist in reducing any potential spread of the virus, we have taken the decision to cancel these whole school assemblies until we have further clarity around the spread of the virus in Aotearoa New Zealand. On Wednesday, school will start at the usual time of 9.10am with normal 1 hour period classes as usual.

While the cancellation of these events is upsetting, our greatest concern is for the health and wellbeing of our students, staff and whānau. We believe that the decisions outlined above are the correct ones for the current time.

I will continue to update you over the coming weeks as this global event develops.

Ngā mihi nui

Mike Savali