SINT MAARTEN (CUL DE SAC) – The St. Maarten Academy PSVE will begin the 2020-2021 school year with online instruction on August 17th, 2020 for all subjects at all levels. With the theme “We are in this together-Let’s Soar Higher”, teachers and students will use three platforms for online learning. These platforms are Zoom – for contact hours, Google Classroom for non-contact hours and Quickschools PSVE for tracking and reporting.
The commencement of E-learning on August 17th, follows one week of students’ online orientation which began on Monday August 10th, with one form level scheduled per day on Zoom. New students and their parents/guardians were hosted on Monday August 10, 2020.
Students’ virtual orientation started with prayer by Ms. Barbara Cocks followed by the rendering of the St. Maarten Song by Ms. Dieanna Webster, after which students and their parents were welcomed by Principal Mrs. Lavern A. Nelson. The Principal also introduced attendees to the schools’ management, heads of content departments, who subsequently introduced students and their parents to the school’s diverse cadre of subject teachers.
Student’s online orientation also featured multiple presentations, the first entitled “Behaviour Guidelines Online” facilitated by the School’s Vice Principal/Discipline Coach Ms. Monique Beek, followed by the Student Care Coordinator Ms. Cocks and the Student Care Department team with presentations emphasizing “Students’ Wellbeing” and “Study Skills Online”.
The students and their parents were also guided by selected staff members on “How to use the Zoom Platform” which was facilitated by Mr. Travis McQuilkin and Mrs. Kavel Wilson, demonstration on “How to use the Google Classroom” which was facilitated by Ms. Nathalie Peterson and “How to use Quickschools” facilitated by Mrs. Kavel Wilson.
All students with outstanding text books belonging to the school in their possession were also invited to return said books to the school, by Friday August 14th, 2020.
The professional development needs of staff were catered to during orientation week, with staff being equipped as e-instructors utilizing the Zoom platform, Google Classroom and Quickschools.
Under the auspices of the Foundation for Academic and Vocational Education (FAVE), Dr. Tasheena Maccow-Thomas, facilitated a wellness e-workshop for staff of both the Academic and PSVE campuses. This virtual workshop was held on Friday August 7, 2020, and catered to the wellbeing of staff by providing individualized wellness baskets for each team member.
As of Monday August 17, 2020, the commencement of online instruction will see students engaged for four contact periods of 60 minutes each day online, with a 30-minute break between each period. Student engagement will be via Zoom – for contact hours, Google Classroom for non-contact hours and Quickschools PSVE for tracking and reporting.
The Board and management wish all staff, students, their parents/guardians and all stakeholders a productive new year, as the school adapts to the new normal for the education sector, given the COVID-19 Pandemic.