Dear Samakee Community, 

It has been a terrific first week and an absolute pleasure to welcome the children back to school, meet their new teachers and new year groups and reunite with their friends. Attendance has been excellent, and children have engaged well in their online lessons. On the following pages, you will see some examples of Reception, Year 2 and Year 5 online classes this week and Kindergarten hard at work making hedgehogs! 

The recent announcement of lifting some phase 1 lockdown measures on 1st September is a welcome relief to us all. I would also like to thank you for your responses to our recent survey, SAS Reopening Onsite Survey; they are constructive – thank you. Now we must wait for crucial details of the official reopening plans that will inform our decisions in the coming weeks. As soon as we have more information about what is required from our school community and the preventive measures and procedures list is shared with schools, we will answer your questions.  

This week, I have attended two virtual meetings; the first with the Secretary of Sor Chor regarding the Government Subsidy for Students and the second with representatives from the International Schools Association of Thailand (ISAT) to discuss the measures required to open schools. There will be another ISAT meeting next Friday, and I will keep you updated. 

In the coming weeks, the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH), the Ministry of Education (MOE) and the Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation (MHESRI) will work collaboratively. They will assemble a list of preventive measures and procedures so that schools and universities can welcome students back on site.  

Schools will need to follow all these government guidelines, and we will share additional information on the reopening procedures and timelines with our community as soon as we have access. We presume that part of the requirements in bringing children back to physical school will include high vaccination rates of teachers and staff and regular Antigen Test Kits (ATK) testing of staff, parents and students, at school and or home. The less invasive saliva test for younger children is also under consideration. It is reassuring to learn from the survey that most of our families and household members have been vaccinated or are due for a second dose shortly.  

The MOE made an additional announcement last week that they intend to vaccinate more than 4 million students aged 12–18 years old with the Pfizer vaccine next month. We will keep you informed as we find out more information from OPEC, MOE, and MoPH about this vaccination opportunity. 

Mental Maths Asia Cup 2021 is an event aimed at students from Asia with a keen interest in mental maths. It gives children an opportunity to practice their skills in a Gamified Maths Environment. Over the summer, some of our students took part in this live maths competition and league. Samakee students battled with participants from more than 250 schools across 17 countries in Asia. 

 We congratulate the following students who have completed the Semi-Finale and have now qualified to compete in the finals held in September. We wish them all the very best of luck!RECEPTION – ONLINE LEARNING
While We Can’t Hug – After reading the heart-warming picture book ‘While We Can’t Hug’, the children in Reception class thought of ways to be affectionate while social distancing. We made funny faces, danced together and made colourful pictures of rainbows and things that make us feel happy. Even though we can’t hug, there are still many ways to show our friends we care.

It has been lovely to see Year 2 so enthusiastic and excited to start the new academic year despite being online. They have caught up with friends, shared adventures from their summer and started Year 2 learning with a hugely positive attitude – well done! 

In Year 5, we kicked off the year by thinking about our goals for the next academic year. We read two poems about Growth Mindset and the power of Yet. We thought of words that linked to the poems, words that we could strive to achieve this year. Using our chosen word, we linked pictures and discussed what the words mean to us and how we can apply it to our learning. Their ideas were inspirational!

Parent Orientation Virtual Meetings will take place the week beginning September 13th, and we will share the dates and times of these meetings with you next week. 

Thank you again for your ongoing support. 

Kind regards,

Monica L Sudhirak
Head of School

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