Return To School - Regent International School | British Curriculum | Best School in Dubai
Return To School
Open Five Days A Week For All Students

Fortes Education Schools are reopening full time in August and we are very excited to welcome all our students, every day, all day. The health and safety of our students, staff and parents remains our top priority. We have been working closely with our approved cleaning partners and have implemented strict protocols adhering to the UAE authorities’ guidelines and recommendations to ensure that the school environment will be safe and secure for your child, while preserving, as best you can, what makes the Regent experience so special.

Welcoming all our students back safely
Regent is now safer, more enjoyable and engaging.
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Fortes Community throughout the readiness drive of reopening Regent
Our two greatest priorities...
A safe and healthy school experience for all,

and as much as normality as possible.

Board of Directors, Fortes Education

Please view our comprehensive COVID-19 health & safety policy and procedures below for a breakdown of the important steps we are taking to support the safe return of our students to campus.

LEADERSHIP AND PLANNING

School operations are supported by strong leadership teams who oversee the smooth re-opening of the buildings. A Crisis Management Committee (CMC) has been set up to provide support and guidance during times when the school faces further unexpected and unprecedented challenges.

The Academic and Operations Teams at Fortes have considered various models for teaching and learning supported by research, which enable a safe learning environment and minimise the risk of infection transmission.

We are prepared and ready to open a physical school fully operational, however, we should not discount the possibility of continuing with our online distance learning as a result of spikes in infections or provide for a blended model to support social distancing and at the same time keep Fortes Community Safe.

Crisis Management New

A physical school that is fully functional focusing on reopening school buildings and resuming operations largely in line with our pre-COVID-19 model. Stringent protocols and enhanced hygiene practices would be implemented to minimise the risk of infection transmission. Pupils would have their temperatures checked on entry to school and ensure frequent handwashing and maintain physical distancing as mandated by the authorities. Distance learning will continue for students and staff who are required to be home.

The fully open school would continue to:

– offer a broad and balanced curriculum
– provide outstanding teaching
– maximise and maintain its numbers on roll

Please see the below diagram.

 

ACADEMICS AND LEARNING

At Fortes Schools, we deliver teaching and learning using our unique pedagogy which is underpinned by effective methodologies focused on the social, emotional, and cognitive development of young learners. We teach with a focus on learning skills rather than a content-driven curriculum.

With the necessary precautions of health and safety and the implementation of various protocols, we have carried out an in-depth analysis of how our approaches may change when we have students and staff attend the Physical School with learning on campus.

We feel that it is important to be realistic about the aspects of pedagogy that can remain unchanged, those that may need some amendments and even those that may need to disappear till we have to social distancing directives, in place in and around our classrooms and schools.

The model allows the full curriculum content to be delivered with all the necessary directives in place to ensure the safety and security of all those attending. The sessions in the timetable will ensure that it meets the time allocation requirements for the subjects of Islamic Education, Arabic, UAE Social Studies, and UAE Moral Education in line with Article 18 (2017) of the MOE By-Laws. With all the necessary health and safety measure in place our approach to learning at each phase will continue to follow our philosophy of learning as outline below:

EYFS: We will continue to blend a range of outstanding Early Years practices to support our highly committed child-initiated learning and provide a sophisticated play-based curriculum with new social distancing norms in place, such that the class is split into two adjacent rooms.

Primary: We will continue to focus on the whole child, where students will continue to be immersed in a thematic journey that encompasses real-life experiences and purposeful, memorable challenges that deepen understanding and develop independence.

Secondary: We will continue in our approach to encourage students to build the skills and learning habits to become independent thinkers. Our priority remains to be on the whole child, creating a warm, enthusiastic, inspirational and exciting environment in which young people can think, learn, create and innovate to succeed.

Students will be allocated and restricted to their home-base class to limit mixing. The students in each year group who use the school transport facility, will be allocated to one home base class so that all students who ride the school bus would only interact with their class and bus groups. Arrangements will be discussed for Students of Determination with parents and clear communication on student home base provided.

EYFS and Y1 Students will be taught in Stable groups of 10 where “Stables groups” means cohorts

Each class will consist of 2 stable groups of 10 with 1 teacher and 1 LSP
Time with the Teacher LSP will be shared equally.
We will continue to be a free flow play based curriculum

EYFS Y1+2 The aftercare service ‘Active Minds’ will be offered to parents who sign up on or before 9th August Please sign up here: Afterschool Active Minds Programme

Friendship groups will be considered as much as possible. Please fill in the online form here: Sunmarke School: Friendship Groups and Active Minds Program form
Parent Student, Teacher Meetings will take place on 26th and 27th August. We will contact you soon to allocate your appointment.

The Distance Learning will continue to be provided to cater for the students who cannot physically be present on campus.

Rahhal provides a creative and innovative alternative to mainstream education – an alternative that brings out the best from within the community and recognises learning wherever it occurs. It is a platform that helps to integrate learning with life, and life with learning. Rahhal programme will continue to enhance learning opportunities for all members of the Fortes community by providing a supportive regulatory environment. Fortes schools will be offering the following Rahhal programmes for students FS1 to Year 8 (RIS) and FS1 to Year 13 (SMS):

• General – For students/families shielding from COVID19 due to health concerns or need to attend school from home.
• Gifted and Talented – for students who cannot attend physical school due to training schedules, programmes or related travel.
• Inclusion – For students with Special educational needs where the physical school setting is not appropriate.

The following Online Platforms will continue to support both Online Learning and faculty/student/family collaboration to ensure a quality student learning experience when planning and delivering remotely:

• Fortes VLE for parents and students.
• EYFS: SeeSaw
• Primary: SeeSaw (Years 1 and 2), Teams and One Note (Years 2 to 6)
• Secondary: Teams and One Note

 

Here is a Timetable Example for All Years:

 

Any member of the school community feeling unwell and/or exhibiting any COVID-19 associated symptoms will be screened as per the Triple S protocol (Screening, Social Distancing and Sanitisation) of Safe Operations and will be asked to stay home. They will not be permitted to enter the school’s premises or will be isolated if their illness should be evident during the day. Medical clearance will be required to return to school premises following a period of physical absence.

Large assemblies will not be permitted, and Fortes Schools shall continue to perform the UAE National Anthem in classrooms.

Across Fortes Schools, we will continue to provide students with the opportunity to develop their interest in various activities and channel their energy into developing new skills. These activities will take place in the physical school. They will continue to be cost-free to parents and delivered by our team of highly qualified teachers. Options will be provided for ECA to be taken up online especially Year 1 and 2.

Electives Key Stage 1 will be as follows:

Whilst, practicing social distancing during the Physical School, Fully Open Campus the guidelines for Electives that will be offered to KS1.

  • A wide range of Electives will be offered based on children’s interests
    The Electives will continue to be timetable in the regular day of the class
    Each Elective session will last 40 to 50 minutes
    The children will stay in their classes and teachers offering the electives will visit the class Two Electives will be offered per week per child

Extra-Curricular Activities for KS2 to KS3
Whilst, practicing social distancing during the Physical School, Fully Open Campus the extra-curricular offerings at KS2 to KS3 will be designed to meet the needs of our students whilst remaining mindful of our ways of working to ensure the safety of all. The ECA offerings for students will follow the Zone/ Bubble Model to ensure students are only in contact with those they are also with during the school day. Activities will be restricted to those that are suitable for non-contact and with no shared equipment.
All Activities will meet the Dubai Municipality current COVID guidelines. No changing facilities will be available. Competitive fixture will resume only under the guidance of KHDA/ Dubai Sports Council.

STUDENT SUPPORT AND WELLBEING

Positive Education (PosEd) brings together the science of Positive Psychology with best teaching practices to enable individuals, schools, and communities to flourish. PosEd drives a person to learn more effectively, and be more resilient, creative, productive, successful, and healthy. Multiple studies on the effects of PosEd testify that improved levels of a child’s wellbeing are associated with higher levels of academic engagement, stronger social skills, higher levels of optimism, improved behaviour, and fewer mental health-related issues.

Fortes’ Positive Education ethos and philosophy, which is embedded into the fabric of our schools, ensure that our pupils are taught how to deal with the diverse emotions that we encounter through life, which is crucial at this time.

Our pupils will continue to benefit from the team of Counsellors at Fortes Schools. The school counsellors are at hand to not only promote and encourage wellbeing, but provide personalised support to pupils through programmes or drop-ins. As schools which recognise the importance of wellbeing, we appreciate that events in recent months may have had a profound impact on the social and emotional wellbeing of many of our students.

Supporting our pupils’ wellbeing at this time will remain a priority to provide a smooth transition from Distance Learning to Physical School Fully Open Campus.

Director of Positive Education and Wellbeing

Katrina Mankani: k.mankani@forteseducation.com

 

Chief Positive Psychologist

Devika Mankani: d.mankani@forteseducation.com

 

School Counsellor

Kayleigh Jane Sumner: k.sumner@forteseducation.com

Our specialist Inclusion team will continue to work in partnership with the class teacher, parents, and external specialists, to develop Individual Achievement Plans for students with Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities.

Targeted intervention, both within and outside of the classroom, will be provided by our experienced team of Individual Support Teachers (ISTs), Individual Needs Support Assistants (INSAs), and/or the School Counsellor, as needed. Additionally, some students may benefit from a modified route to education, which may include an adjusted timetable, specific subject exemptions, and/or alternative-augmentative curriculum option. The schools are accredited centres for the delivery of the ASDAN programme of study.

We will continue to provide support for pupils who are English Language Learners (ELL) or have English as an additional language (EAL) through specialist classes taught by a TEFL-qualified practitioner. There will be the continued development of the Fortes Intensive English Language Learning Programme and the continuing evolution of our Sports Heroes Academy, a voluntary peer-coaching programme working with Children of Determination.

Guidance for parents of students exempted from returning to school

Fortes Schools shall maintain regular contact with parents of exempted students to ensure they feel supported in managing their child(ren)’s continued distance learning, till the time they allowed to return to a physical school day.

Virtual open houses will be conducted at regular intervals to allow exempted students to virtually visit their school grounds.

Guidance for parents in students’ remote learning and mental wellbeing

With distance learning may continue at least over the next term for children and staff exempted due to various authorised reasons, we will actively involve parents in the distance learning process to ensure that students are engaged in the tailor-made learning programmes.

Fortes Schools shall maintain regular contact with parents of exempted students to ensure they feel supported in managing their child(ren)’s continued distance learning, till the time they allowed to return to a physical school day.

Virtual open houses will be conducted at regular intervals to allow exempted students to virtually visit their school grounds.

With distance learning may continue at least over the next term for children and staff exempted due to various authorised reasons, we will actively involve parents in the distance learning process to ensure that students are engaged in the tailor-made learning programmes.

We will continue to work closely with our external After-School Activity and Peripatetic providers to ensure our schools’ offering is compliant with federal mandates of health and safety. Should we be authorised to offer such activities, Fortes Schools will as per the directives take all the necessary measures and provide the service to the Fortes community. The details of which will be provided at a later date.

ASA Manager: Mrs. Elaine Baillie: e.baillie@forteseducation.com

The following Fortes Guidelines are to be followed by all our ASA and ECA providers:

Coaches and Trainers

  • Follow the prescribed guidelines from Dubai Municipality Health and Safety (DMHS) for screening the coaches and trainer who visit the premises, as well as, adhere to the protocol set by Fortes school for screening the visitors entering the premises. (Mandatory temperature checks and completion of the declaration form for all onsite staff, trainers and participators).
  • If temperature exceeds 37.5 Celsius trainers/coaches and trainees/students will be prohibited to enter the facility.
  • It will be compulsory to a wear face masks while entering the Fortes School. Coaches and Trainers will also be required to wear a face visor when dealing with students and parents where 2 m distance is not maintained.
  • All staff and trainers to practice social distancing of 2m as per the guidelines approved by DMHS.
    Social gatherings among trainers and staff will not be allowed.
  • The provider needs to have a dedicated Hygiene Champion assigned to ensure compliance to all DMHS guidelines and SOPs.
  • For contact tracing adequate records of its members’ coaches/trainers and students/participants including names, telephone numbers, visit dates, and duration of times, recorded temperature on entry and exit needs to be maintained to assist if contact tracing becomes necessary.
  • If anyone of the staff/coach/ trainer was confirmed positive according to a COVID-19 PCR test by an accredited facility, they are not to return unless they are granted a medical certificate (clearance certificate) endorsed by DHA stating that they are discharged from isolation.
  • Staff will be discouraged from exiting the camp during the day, but if they do for emergency purposes, they will need to sanitise and change gloves and masks upon return.

Screening and Emergency plan

  • Mandatory contactless screening for staff, coaches, trainers, students, and visitors based on DMHS guidelines will need to be carried out for all entering the facility. If the temperature is ≥37.5 Celsius, entry to the facility will not be allowed.
  • If a case of illness is detected amongst student or staff presenting COVID- 19 symptoms such as fever (≥37.5 ̊C), cough, myalgia or fatigue, shortness of breath, sore throat, runny nose, diarrhea and nausea, headache, or loss of sense of smell or taste, DHA hotline number 800342 should be contacted by the coaches, trainers and health and safety champion.
  • Fortes administration will dedicate an isolation room and the provider will have to set procedures to handle COVID-19 suspect/confirmed cases as well as the disinfection procedures as per DHA/DM guidelines.

Disinfection Regulations

  • All the common surfaces, and common areas of the facility need to be cleaned after every use (or minimum once every hour) such as toilets, escalators, elevators, rails, counters, countertop, harness, frequently touched items, reused cash consoles, gadgets etc.
  • A schedule from Fortes schools will allow for mid-and post-session cleaning periods, allowing a 10 – 15 minutes buffer between training sessions.
  • Mandatory provision of disinfectant i.e. wipes to clean the equipment especially if used by 2 or more people.
    No sharing of equipment during the training without disinfection.
  • Frequent sanitisation of all equipment including racquets, target cones, balls, ball machines,
    shuttles, tables and heavy equipment part of the facility would need to be sanitised before & after every use (or Fortes will provide the disinfection facility at an additional cost).

Note: (Disinfection of the areas at an additional cost can be provided by Fortes from a DM approved third party Vendor)

Social Distancing, Capacity and Facility Restrictions

  • No waiting area or reception areas will be allowed.
  • Physical barriers to create distancing or segregate exercise areas will need to be in place at entry and exit points.
  • Equipment to be placed at a minimum of 2m distance and any additional equipment that do not fit the social distancing requirements to be removed from the facility.
  • In case the equipment is difficult to move/remove/transfer to achieve the required distancing “not in use” sign on them to be displaced or turn them off.
  • Ratio to be maintained as per DMHS for all sports and sessions conducted at Fortes Premises.
  • No adults (Parents/ Nannies) other than the trainers and coaches and participants /trainees allowed to stay on the premises.
  • Use of showers or changing rooms not permitted.
  • Use of pools is not permitted.
  • Use of lockers is not permitted.
  • Specific Signages need to be provided for social distancing for caution/ capacity allowance and social distancing floor markers

An appropriate disinfection schedule should be shared and adopted by the provider to ensure constant sanitisation of the used area as per the Dubai Municipality guidelines

  • The procedure and workflow for disinfection of all equipment and the resources needs to be outlined and shared by the provider.
  • For each outdoor sport – a hygiene/sanitisation procedure for fields, pitches, tracks, courts etc. for pre-opening, post-game/training sessions need to be shared
  • The provider should have coaches and trainers trained on the best practices based on DMHS Guidelines for application during operations requirements for health, safety and hygiene.
  • Mandatory provision of mobile hand sanitiser dispensers across the facility and common areas.
  • Visible markers on the floor to indicate appropriate spacing.
  • For enclosed soft play sections, external shoes are be forbidden, unless disposable shoes plastic cover are provided.
  • No party bookings, events or celebrations are allowed in the facility.
  • 2 meters social distancing measures will be displayed on all clearly visible areas within the facility.

Racket Sports includes (Tennis, Paddle Tennis, Badminton, Table Tennis)

  • Equipment should be touched only by the player/coach and should be cleaned frequently, including racquets, target cones, balls, ball machines, shuttles, tables, surrounding glass, etc.
  • Preferable to use a new set of balls after every reservation/training session.
  • While training players, each should have their marked hoppers and teaching charts to avoid sharing with other players.
  • Using a ball machine option for giving lessons, as it avoids having people touch the balls.
  • Using ball tubes and basket pickups to pick up loose balls after a ball machine rotation to limit contact. Ensure ball tubes and baskets are sanitised post-use.
  • Changing sides are after each set is not permitted.
  • Ball Sports includes (Basketball, Football, Handball, Volleyball)

Football

  • Maximum of 20 players and 5 Coaches/Trainers to be distributed accordingly (TBC).
  • Full-sized football pitch to be split into 4 sections.
  • Use separation cones between the training sections.
  • Maximum 4 players with 1 Coach/Trainer per section.

Basketball

  • Maximum of 6 players with 1 Coach/Trainer to be distributed accordingly.
  • Full-sized basketball court to be split into 2 sections.
  • Use separation cones between the training sections.
  • Maximum 3 players per section.

Volleyball

  • Maximum of 8 players with 2 Coaches/Trainers to be distributed accordingly.
  • Full-sized Volleyball court to be split into 2 sections.
  • Maximum 4 players with 1 Coach/Trainer per section.

Handball

  • Maximum of 6 players with 1 Coach/Trainer to be distributed accordingly.
  • Full-sized basketball court to be split into 2 sections.
  • Use separation cones between the training sections.
  • Maximum 3 players per section.

Contingency/emergency plan

  • Mandatory for the providers to prepare and share contingency and emergency operation and training plans in case of possible Covid19 positive staff /trainer and coaches.
  • Mandatory contactless screening for guests, visitors & contractors based on DMHS guidelines 28

SAFE OPERATIONS

To ensure the health and safety of pupils on buses, Fortes Schools will ensure stringent checks of all the students using the transport are carried out, alongside strict protocols. The following guidelines will be followed:

  • Buses to be sterilised twice daily with RTA approved disinfectants.
  • Reduced capacity (50%) will be maintained on the buses for social distancing (based on the government directives).
  • The temperature will be taken before students entering the bus and recorded.
  • Students 6 years (grade 1 and 2) and over, travelling on the bus will be required to wear a mask and follow the social distancing protocols for seating.
  • Students with any sign or symptoms such as temperature, cold, runny nose, a sore throat will not be allowed to board the bus.
  • Bus hygiene will be maintained by following the appropriate sanitisation and physical distancing standards.
  • For example, seat belts, arm rests, handles, rails, etc. will be sanitised after each use, in accordance with RTA’s relevant guidelines for public transportation.
  • Daily record keeping will be maintained by capturing all bus riders throughout the daily transportation programme/ trips. Absence will be recorded and reported.
  • Adequate signage will be used inside the bus to guide children towards hygiene practices (i.e.respiratory hygiene, waste management, etc.)
  • Adequate waste management and disinfection practices will be followed especially that children might use back-seat pockets and bins.
  • Existing parents can register for Regent International School Transport by (1) sending a message to the Transport Coordinator, Mr. Naveen D’Silva and Ms. Emelda Besacruz on the VLE app, or (2) logging onto MyBus and filling out the online enquiry form. Our team will respond to you.
  • New parents at both Fortes Schools must register at MyBus

 

See the bus route for Regent International School in the table below.

 

To mitigate the spread of COVID-19, the temperature will be checked using thermal scanners installed at the school entrances of the schools, as well as, with the handheld thermometer.

  • The entry and exit into the school will be through limited access gates and staggered to maintain social distancing.
  • Special consideration will be given to students in EYFS and students of determination.
  • The entry and exit will also be monitored by the SLT and Crisis Management Committee (CMC). The duty allocation will be shared with the staff.
  • Pre-designated drop off and pick up zones will be allocated to each year group with the flow of movement managed with designated entry and exit points. Details of the movement plans for entry and exit will be shared with each year group before the start of the academic year on the VLE.
  • Students or Staff that are flagged at temperature screening will be isolated into the designated isolation pods, with additional screening by a handheld thermometer.
  • Staff will be discouraged from exiting the school during the day, but if they do for emergency purposes, they will be requested not to return to the premises unless they have fully sanitised and changed their clothes upon return. They will also undergo thermal/temperature screening before entry.
  • Only one family member or a guardian is allowed to enter the school facility for drop off/pick up his/her child. People with compromised medical conditions, including the elderly, should not come for drop off and pick up.
  • All parents are requested to download Al Hosn Tracing App on their phones to help you’re your child(ren) and Fortes community COVID-19 free.

 

 

Regent School Building Access Plan

Students will enter the school via a designated gate and follow a colour coded signed route to their learning zone. Click here for the Entry and Exit Map

 

Following extensive research on measures used to mitigate the spread of COVID -19, CMC at Fortes Schools has designed and created strict policies and procedures to ensure that day-to-day school operations run seamlessly whilst ensuring the health and safety of all.

These measures include the three S’s; Screening, Social Distancing and Sanitising, and are called ‘The Triple S Protocol’ to sustain increased health and hygiene measures. For safe movement around the school, requirements such as wearing masks, temperature checks, handwashing, frequent sanitisation, and social distancing for all students will be mandated.

 

Before students can return to school, the parents will have to complete a travel declaration form which is part of the Fortes Travel Control Policy for infectious diseases. These will have to be completed and returned to the class teacher or form tutor before the staff of the academic year.

Students and Staff will be asked to check their temperatures and other symptoms at home before arrival in school and to inform their teacher, tutor, or line manager if any symptoms persist.

 

The temperatures will be checked at the designated points of entry to schools using the thermal scanners. The staff and students with a temperature of ≥37.5 C will be given 15 minutes to stay in the isolation booth where their temperature will be checked again using had-held thermometer.

These entry points will be monitored by Senior Leadership Teams and the members of the Crises Management Committee.

In the event of a student or staff is tested positive while they are not at the schools. Fortes Schools will take prompt action and initiate an Emergency Response Procedure with a clear action plan. Critical aspects of the emergency response procedure will include:

  • Prompt action Screening, Isolating, Communication and Sanitisation (SICS)
  • Tracing Immediate contacts
  • Tracing Secondary contacts
  • Isolating them, sending home until it is confirmed that they have not contracted the virus.
  • Prompt Communications will be carried out
  • Deep Sanitisation and disinfecting of the identified contact areas
  • The identity of staff or students will not be disclosed

Screening and Stay home

The Principals or the designated Health and Safety Officer or the appropriate member of the leadership team at the schools will work to identify direct and close contacts of the case during the 48 hours before the child or staff member falling ill. This is likely to be the classmates and teacher of that class who have been in

  • Direct contact without PPE:
  • being coughed on, or
  • having a face-to-face conversation within 1 metre, or
  • having unprotected skin-to-skin physical contact, or
  • travel in a small vehicle with the case, or
  • any contact within the proximity of 2 metre for 1 minute or longer without face-to-face
    contact
  • Close contact without PPE:
  • Extended close contact (between 1 and 2 metres for more than 15 minutes) with a case.

For contact tracing we will maintain adequate records of the staff, students’ visitors including names, telephone numbers and visit dates, to assist the necessary tracing and provide these records to DHA to facilitate contact tracing.

Isolating

All direct and close contacts will be excluded from school and advised to self-isolate for 14 days starting from the day they were last in contact with the case. For example, if the case tests positive on Thursday and was last in school on the previous Monday the first day of the 14-day period is on Monday. Household members of contacts do not need to self-isolate unless the contact develops symptoms. In cases of COVID-19 emergency, we will further follow the endorsed guidelines for emergencies by the school’s qualified nurse while wearing adequate personal protection equipment.

Communication

The Principal will send a letter to the identified contacts and provide advice for contacts and their families as per the directives. As per the directives the contacts will not be tested unless they develop symptoms. If contact should develop symptoms, then the parent/carer should arrange for the child to be tested and the staff would need to go for testing as well. This would also apply to any parent or household member who develops symptoms.

Sanitisation and disinfection

Measures for disinfection will follow the school disinfection policy guidelines. All the areas where the student or the staff movement has been traced who has been tested positive will be disinfected using fogging machine and prescribed disinfectant like Sterillox and D4 and Virex. Complete PPE equipment will be worn by the concerned sanitisation and disinfection team.

If students or staff were confirmed positive according to a COVID-19 PCR test by an accredited facility, they are not to return unless they are granted a clearance certificate by DHA stating that they are discharged from isolation.

If the Student or Staff becomes a suspected case while they are in school reference to COVID-19 protocol depending on the severity of the case as mentioned in the table below will be considered

 

Pathways to Screening

The symptoms checklist above will form the standard method of categorising and identifying student and staff members who can safely go home or who may need to be transported via an ambulance to a specific facility based upon their condition. Each school will have a designated area where an individual can be evaluated and screened for symptoms.

Isolation

If the case definition is met, student or staff member:

  • Will immediately be given a mask (if they are not wearing one), be directed to a separate area (an isolation room).
  • Be asked to maintain at least 2 m distance between suspected student /staff and another staff/student.
  • Will be instructed to go home and self-isolate for 48 hours and return to school only if symptom- free for 48 hours
  • If symptoms worsen to inform the class teacher/form tutor or the Line Manager and HR Officer.
  • Will be asked to call COVID-19 hotline 80011111 for further information.

The staff and student should not return to school until the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) result is obtained. If the result is negative and there is a clinical assessment of a probable COVID-19 case, the student or staff should complete a 14-day quarantine. If the result is negative and there is no clinical assessment for a probable case, the student or staff can resume schooling so long as they are symptom-free.

The re-opening of schools is an important step in returning towards a new normality. However, the new normal needed us to adhere to government guidance on best practice for social distancing and maintaining a safe working environment for students and staff. The guidance on social distancing has been mandated to be 1.5m inside the classroom and 2m outdoors.

Whilst, a number of these measures may be deemed to be inconvenient to the smooth running of a school, however we at Fortes schools believe that for the safety of students and staff it is essential and that these must be closely adhered to.

Markings inside and outside will indicate 2m distancing which will need to be adhered to at all times. Where possible one-way system will be introduced to aid movement of traffic especially during entry and exit from school. Students and staff will be expected to move in the direction of arrows indicated and the two-metre spacing of markers will gives a visual indication of distancing required between individuals.

To prevent the spread of infection, protocols for social distancing will be embedded in all aspects of the school operations.

 

Organisation of Learning

As the purpose of social distancing is to avoid pupils from infecting each other, and of infecting school staff, the classes will typically be being taught in ‘home bases’, in where they will remain for as much of the day as possible, thus reducing the risk of cross-contamination.

In the Secondary phase, a similar ‘home base’ approach will be used, with the teacher moving between classes, rather than classes moving between rooms. Staff movement will be reduced by assigning particular teachers and support staff to designated ‘home bases’ or zones. The government’s social distancing measure continues to be 1.5metres for indoor areas 2 metres for outdoors. The aim of EYFS and Primary Phase will be to ‘minimise contact’ as we recognise the difficulty in achieving proper social distancing in these phases.

Organisation Of Teaching Spaces and Classrooms

Alongside considering net capacity, the leadership team at Fortes has scrutinised all the spaces within the school campus and rearranged furniture. The EYFS and Primary tables used in the learning areas that are normally occupied by 2 to 4 pupils, will have 1 to 2 individual occupants who will sit in an order that would maintain social distance of 1.5m from a child at an adjacent table in the other area. In the Secondary phase we have will have forward-facing furniture to optimise space safely, and have students facing in the same direction reduces the risk of them breathing on each other. The classes will follow allocated routes to minimise contamination.

Class Sizes

At Fortes Schools, we have with our engineering team managed the space allocation for students learning to ensure that we are compliant with 1.5 m social distancing. The Class sizes will depend on the size of the classroom with mandated 1.5 m social distancing maintained as per the directives for the schools. Spaces will be allocated outside the classroom to allow appropriate social distancing, as well as, allow more movement for students within their home base /stable zones. Based on the students that will want to continue learning online, lessons taught in the classroom will be streamed for the group that is distance learning from home. This model will be helpful for schools should a phase or class need to be quarantined or isolated due to suspected COVID – 19 positive case.

The desk and table spacing has been allocated based on the dividing the classroom into square grids of 1.5m to ensure that students have a safe space allocated to them during their time in their classrooms. For EYFS tables and chairs have also been placed at a distance of 1.5 m with the play spaces. Below are the floor plans that have used grid spacing method for ensuring that classroom is following mandated 1.5 m spacing.

 

 

Planning Movement Around School

To mitigate the risk of spreading infection, we will be reducing movement around the school as it a critical factor in social distancing. Where movement is unavoidable, one-way systems will help to prevent people from getting too close to each other. Entry and exits will be monitored where possible we will for different groups of students use different staircases to avoid congestion.

  • Students will enter the school via a designated gate and follow a colour coded signed route to their learning zone. For Regent International School Entry and Exit Map
  • Movement around school, washrooms and recreation space will be limited to year group bubbles. Changing of classrooms will be limited and only take place for specialist lessons.
  • Personal lockers will be outside student’s main classroom to store all their books and equipment.

Break and Lunch Times

Careful management and supervision will be provided to reduce random movement as well as ensuring we are social distancing during break and lunchtimes. The number of pupils on playgrounds and in social spaces will be limited to make social distancing feasible. Where possible, students will only interact with peers and staff from their ‘home base’ or zoned area. The students will have their lunch in their classrooms. Sanitisation and disinfection before and after the meal will be supervised.

PE Lessons

Students and PE teachers will not be required to wear masks when engaged in strenuous physical activities such as running and workouts, as long as 2 m physical distancing measures are adhered to. PE lessons and sports that do not require physical interaction will be the focus during the term. All staff and students will practice physical distancing of at least 1.5 metres during the indoor PE lesson and 2 m for the outdoor lesson. Visible markers on the floor will be used to indicate appropriate spacing. DM Health & Safety Guidelines (DMHS) will be used to disinfect the sports halls. Sanitisation of all equipment, and all areas in used during PE lessons will be sanitised in the afternoons post closure of schools through proper sanitising schedule.

  • School swimming pools will remain closed until further notice.
  • No tournaments or events will also take place until further notice.

Soft Start Organisation and schedules

We understand that children have been absent from school, large groups, spaces, and normal routines for 6 months. This is a large period in a child’s life, and we need to recognise that levels of both excitement and anxiety are raised. We aim is to ensure as smooth and calm a return to the school environment as possible. The new normal way of functioning will mean different entrances, zoned routes, and different ways of working in class. Children need to be familiar and comfortable with this before lessons starting on the 1st of September 2020.

A soft start induction for all students on Sunday 30th and Monday 31st August will be put in place. Students will need to come to school for their allocated time slot only during these days.

Whilst, we are practicing social distancing entry and exit to school will be streamlined to minimalise possible cross- contamination. Parents from Year 3 up will not be permitted into school. Below is the allocated entrance for each year group along with their time slot for first-day induction/ meet the teacher.

 

Outdoors

Playground areas will be marked for social distancing at 2m along with other outer play surfaces within schools. Children will be strictly monitored when outdoors and the classes will be spaced and allowed as per the timetable.

More details of Social Distancing are outlined in the Fortes School Social Distancing Policy

Fortes has researched and implemented the best globally recognised practices and protocols for sanitisation and disinfection. A deep clean of all the areas of the school has been carried out throughout the closure period and schedules are in place for daily, weekly cleaning. Additional sanitisation and disinfection processes are scheduled to ensure that the school campus is clean and disinfected for students to return safely. An increase in the frequency of cleaning and the resources used for cleaning will minimise the risk of germ transmission.

Cleaning products that have been approved by the Dubai Municipality will continue to be used to sanitise and disinfect the schools. FE Schools Cleaning and Disinfecting Policy outlines the process and protocols to be followed. Hand washing stations, hand sanitiser dispensers are allocated in each class and in strategic places around the schools. Schedules are in place to clean the frequently touched surfaces or high touchpoints such as the bathroom, doorknobs, classroom desks, canteen tables, hand sanitiser dispensers etc. Following schedule will be followed for cleaning.

 

Shared Resources /Materials

All shared resources will be disinfected at the end of the day. The classrooms toys, books, scissors, pens, pencils, crayons, arts and crafts materials and messy play resources, as well as, roleplay and other materials will be sanitized after each and every single use where needed and possible. All classroom items will be immediately removed if sneezed, coughed or put in mouth by the children. A designated, clearly labelled, basin/ container filled with Milton mixture will be used to disinfect these items. Once cleaned and sanitised these will be returned to their areas.

A hand-held fogging machine will be used to disinfect the musical instruments. Students will need to provide their own equipment where possible.

List of DM approved DM Materials

The following approved items are used across the Fortes Schools:

 

 

HSE Mitigating Equipment

Fortes is in the process of evaluating and finalising the following HSE mitigating equipment for the each of the S’s of the Triple S protocol being followed at the schools.

 

 

 

 

Handwashing

Handwashing messages have featured strongly through the government’s public health announcements and we agree that hygiene arrangements must be of the highest order when schools reopen. No assumptions can be made as to whether students have maintained scrupulous handwashing during lockdown – and the return to school will lead to them being exposed to people beyond their immediate families for the first time in several weeks. Maintaining hygiene will be re- enforced with posters and videos making the process clear. Students will be reminded during the day of times when handwashing must be undertaken including after entering the school, break time, before and after eating, after using the toilet, and on exiting the school. EYFS and KS1 children will be reminded how to wash their hands, such as by timing the activity to two choruses of ‘Happy Birthday’. In addition to handwashing, students will have access to sanitising liquid on entering and leaving the school, classroom and common areas. Regular checks of toilet facilities will be conducted.
Posters will be used in many to promote handwashing and other aspects of health awareness routines during the day.

Masks and Face Coverings

Across the world, different approaches are being taken about the personal protection and hygiene in an attempt to stem the spread of COVID-19. Scientific advice is that masks can be effective in slowing infection spread because they reduce the water-borne droplets that can be coughed, sneezed, or spat into the air by someone who is infected and may be asymptomatic. However, the careless removal of a mask can cause its wearer to become infected by droplets that have collected on its outward-facing side. According to the government directive children age of 6 years and above are required to wear the face masks. There are potential health benefits of masks and also some challenges. In the classroom, much communication is achieved through non-verbal cues, and wearing a mask will affect teaching and learning styles. Fortes will be providing its staff transparent masks and face shields to overcome the barriers to leaning.

Cough and Sneeze Etiquette

Covering coughs and sneezes and keeping hands clean helps prevent the spread of serious respiratory illnesses and we know COVID-19 germs can be easily spread by coughing, sneezing, or talking. Students will be reminded not to:

  • Touch the face with unwashed hands after touching contaminated surfaces or objects
  • Touching surfaces or objects that may be frequently touched by other people
  • Cover their mouth and nose with a tissue when they cough or sneeze
  • Throw used tissues in the bin
  • If they don’t have a tissue to cough or sneeze into their elbow, not their hands
  • To wash or to use a sanitiser immediately

Books /Library

Mitigating the risk of contamination from sharing resources such as reading books, where the coronavirus survives on paper for at least 24 hours, a selection of library books will be made available in the classroom for students for a period of 6 weeks. These will then be returned to the library and not be used by another group for 5 days and until after the disinfection has been carried out. Staggered entry to the library will be allowed based on the home base class allocation. Adequate cleaning and disinfection between lessons will be carried out. Library equipment and gadget will be disinfected after every use and children will not be allowed to share the equipment.

All the books related to the curriculum will be kept in the school and equipment that students will carry to and from school should be reduced where possible, to further reduce the possibility of contamination. The practice of paper-based materials for marking by the teacher will not be allowed. Self-assessment and online assessment, depending on the nature of work and age of students will be practiced which will reduce opportunities for infection transmission.

 

 

At Fortes Schools we understand how important uniforms are in a student’s life; it not only provides uniformity and equality among the children but also adds to a sense of belongingness. We continue to review all our policies to ensure they are fit for purpose.

Our in-school Uniform Shop will be open by appointment only* as we are required to social distance and steam each item of clothing following fitting.

For Regent International School, parents can make an appointment for the family through the VLE app by clicking “Uniform Appointments”. Here you will need to make an appointment for one child to be able to purchase for the family. Parents can also purchase uniforms online through our online uniform shop here.

On the days where students have PE lessons, they must come to school in their full PE uniform. Showers and changing rooms are not permitted.

The following items must be brought to school each day:

 

 

BYOD: Tablet or Laptop Required Every Day

  • Resources will continue to be shared on the Microsoft Teams and MS OneNote platform. Students will continue to submit and store work as files or photos. Therefore, a fully charged device is required daily.
  • Students must bring a Noise Cancelling Headphone with mic which is a new requirement. This will allow students to work collaboratively and access audio and video resources.
  • Whilst each classroom is equipped with charging stations for emergencies, it is not practical for student to be powering up whilst working due to the new social distance designed classroom. Therefore, we would appreciate devices arriving fully charged daily.
  • A full table or our recommended specifications and software can be found in our more detailed BYOD policy.

Social distancing is a necessary measure to prevent the spread of the virus, therefore strict health and safety measures will be followed to ensure mealtimes are safe for all members of the Fortes community. In order to create a safe environment and ensure compliancy with the directives issued by the authorities, the following measures will be taken during break times:

  • All students will eat lunch within their designated Zone or Social Bubbles.
  • Our catering provider, Keita, will offer a packed lunch option which will be delivered to the student’s zone. (Parents can sign up to Keita via the VLE).
  • Alternatively, students can bring a healthy packed lunch.
  • As per the Ministry of Education (MOE) guidelines, water fountains are not permitted at present.

 

The School clinics follow DHA/DOH guidance and provide continuous support to the Fortes Schools. The school nurses and Health and Safety officers along with the Crises Management Committee (CMS) will ensure the appropriate screening of individuals with symptoms related to COVID and mandate the isolation of individuals and as per federal guidelines.

In addition to the school clinics there will be an assigned and designated area with the required equipment and resources needed to deal with and COVID suspected cases for isolation. Some of the ways that the schools will ensure that the highest health and safety measures are in place are outlined below:

There will be:

  • An isolation area that is separate to Nurses Clinic with adequate ventilation
  • Ample supply of PPEs which includes disposable 3-ply surgical face masks/N95 masks, face shield/goggles, disposable gloves, head and shoe covers, surgical gown.
  • Regularly monitoring of stock levels
  • No-touch thermometers and surface disinfectants

Maintenance team will only be allowed on the premises post school opening hours. For any emergency maintenance during the day the team will follow the necessary ‘Triple S Protocol’ and only access the areas wearing the required PPE.

Deliveries will also be scheduled after the school’s opening hours. Proper precautionary measures will be applied especially for pick up or drop of items by designating a specific location and following a contactless process.

Tours within the physical school are now allowed with the necessary guideline and protocols in place but for those who wish to liaise with the school to know more about life at Fortes Schools from the comfort of their own home, are invited to explore the Fortes Schools through a series of videos. However, to get a glimpse of the Fortes School Life, hear from Senior Leaders about the curriculum and our approaches in EYFS, Primary and Secondary we prefer to tour the parents around the campus and experience how and why Fortes School is their best option. Our potential parents can watch the musical performances, sports day highlights and so much more if they stroll down our exclusive YouTube Playlist here.

The process for admitting your child into a Fortes School can be seen below:

Admissions Workflow Process

 

Frequently Asked Questions related to the admissions and Fees

Fortes Education stands in solidarity with our parent community and will endeavour, where possible, to help our families in financial distress due to the the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. In the academic year 2020-21, parents experiencing severe financial hardship may apply for financial aid via the Fortes Relief Package.

Through a “means-tested” approach, the school may consider offering financial aid to those families who can prove genuine inability to pay fees due to adverse impact of Covid-19 on their family’s income.

To apply for the Fortes Relief Package, parents will need to contact the school’s Customer Care Team via the VLE (on desktop or mobile app) and upload the required documentation to prove eligibility.

FORTES SCHOOLS PLEDGE

We at Fortes Schools pledge to in the short term for students

  • Establish a calm and purposeful educational atmosphere in schools, where staff works together to reduce stress and anxiety and promote positive behaviours.
  • Identify the most vulnerable students, and their specific needs arising from their experiences.
  • Identify and signpost appropriate mental health support for individual students, such as:
  • In-school support from counsellors and pastoral team
  • Peer support
  • Bereavement counselling
  • Ensure students and staff are well-informed about the virus and understand the need for the measures being taken in school and wider society.
  • Use the taught curriculum to:
  • Address students’ experiences during the lockdown
  • Reinforce positive behaviours, hygiene and coping strategies specific to the pandemic
  • Timetable positive activities to promote wellbeing, mental and physical health
  • Revise safeguarding and behaviour policies to ensure they support positive behaviours, for example about maintaining social distancing, promoting hygiene and health.
  • Provide training for staff in implementing revisions to policies and in managing student behaviour in a constructive way in the longer term for students
  • Continue with curriculum adaptations to include strategies to:
  • Support students to develop coping mechanisms and resilience in the event of future closure
  • Educate students about misinformation and harmful media reports and social media
  • Provide ongoing training for staff

For staff:

  • Maintain a strong sense of community, including and involving all staff.
  • Ensure staff feels able to ask for help and seek individualised support within school if they need it.
  • Sign-post services to support with the specific issues, including face-to-face, telephone and online services.
  • Provide additional training in developments in mental health and dealing with trauma to support staff in dealing with their own and students’ needs.
  • Ensure teachers new to the school are given quality induction and support so they quickly feel part of the school and a wider network.

For school leaders:

  • School Board of Directors will play an active role in ensuring the health and wellbeing of Senior Leaders. We will ensure that leaders are not overstretched, particularly where schools are open for vastly extended hours.

Summary

Whilst social distancing will certainly become the ‘new normal’ for much, if not all of the academic year 2020-21, this cannot be at the expense of the highest quality experience of student learning, and wellbeing at our schools. Equally, families that have also experienced months of lockdown or remote learning are extremely eager for predictable, consistent and supportive school structures to help them as they attempt to normalise their working arrangements. The solutions that we choose to implement must, therefore, be empathetic, agile, and consistent in the face of changing circumstances if we are to meet these diverse requirements. This also means that we must provide an online learning provision for those families that are still anxious about their child returning to a physical school. We will facilitate this through the provision of synchronous in-class video technology so that the small number of students needing to access school remotely are able to do so.

The key to an exemplary model is of course that student welfare, academic progress, and the continuity of experience is paramount. In our estimation, the Physical School, Fully Open Campus Model of operation is best suited to meet these requirements and will provide the best experience for students and their families. None of the Blended models can facilitate this, and all of them, inherently involve disruption as and when the school moves in or out of the remote learning scenarios during the year. The Physical School, Fully Open Campus Model avoids this problem completely.

This compendium has not only outlined how the operations of the schools will work under the preferred model, but it has helped us iron out all the necessary mitigating circumstances and preventive measures that will need to be in place for next academic year.

Our school reopening plan has been approved by the KHDA and all the above procedures will be implemented August 2020 onward.

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