'We just wanted to eliminate the unknowns': Saskatoon schools hope to ease anxiety with preview videos
SASKATOON -- With the start of school in just one week, schools are busy with staff preparing to welcome students back after four months of not being in their buildings.
Some schools are getting creative with videos to help students transition into new COVID-19 protocols as seamlessly as possible.
Shelly Lord is the principal at Bishop Filevich Ukrainian Bilingual School and along with the Vice Principal and staff, created a video of what students can expect when they walk through the doors of their school on Tuesday.
"We just wanted to eliminate the unknowns for our kids. We know that students are going to have lots of anxiety about what schools going to look like and the more we can give them before school starts the more we’re hoping it eases their anxiety and any questions they have or their parents,” Lord told CTV News.
Lord said staff mobilized to make the video quickly, knowing that it would help with uncertainty for everyone.
“We want to remove any barriers or questions that parents have and even having that little inside glimpse would go a long way to have families feel comfortable.”
The video is a walkthrough of the new traffic-flow changes to accommodate distancing compete with new floor stickers. It also includes tips on where to stand if waiting for the washroom or at the office administrator’s desk, but it doesn’t end at the doors of the school.
Recesses will be different with two breaks in the morning and two in the afternoon. In the video Lord explains how in the first recess Kindergarten through Grade 4 will go out then in a separate recess, the older grades will get to go outside.
Brevort Park school also posted a video outlining the procedures students can expect with distancing in class, in hallways, washrooms and outside in the playground.
“We have provided guidance to schools for making their own videos to share with their school communities. The goal is to introduce students to what school will look like and some of the changes so they feel more comfortable going back. We had recommended having them posted before the long weekend," Veronica Baker, with Saskatoon Public Schools told CTV News in an email.
Lord says, the job now is to ensure students feel safe and that families feel safe sending their kids to school.
“It’s all about the students now.”