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Principal's Welcome Message

Welcome students, parents, guardians, caregivers & members of the community to the 2020/21 school year at Abbotsford Senior Secondary School. Under the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic this will undoubtedly be the most unusual school opening and school year any of us has experienced.

The good news is that school is opening. Face-to-face instruction for our students begins Thursday, September 10th. Countless hours of planning have been invested in preparation for this opening. Preparations have drawn on the expertise and direction of the British Columbia Public Health Officer and British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, have been coordinated by senior staff in all areas of the Abbotsford School District, and have been adapted to meet the specific context and conditions of Abbotsford Senior Secondary. Our plan is comprehensive in providing safeguards for the health of our students and staff. It also creates rich and flexible opportunities for our students to engage in their learning and safely re-engage with their peers and with school staff.
On September 8th & 9th school staff will be preparing for the arrival of students. These days will be dedicated to getting staff trained in necessary health & safety procedures, getting classrooms ready, and organizing our new model of instruction which features:

- four quarters of two classes each rather than two semesters of four classes each;
- face-to-face instruction in the mornings;
- blended learning instruction in the afternoons; and,
- cohorts of 30 to minimize exposure of students and staff to potential COVID-19 infection.  

Much will be different about school this year. For students, this includes:

 - attending school in the mornings;
- wearing masks at all times when outside of your classroom;
- learning from home in the afternoons;
- no lunch period at school;
- no lockers;
- no school sports, games or competitions; 
- no performances before a live audience; and,
- no extracurricular clubs or activities.

For parents/guardians/caregivers this includes:

no entering the building;
no face-to-face meetings with teachers, counsellors, Vice-Principals/Principal or other school staff; and,
Parent Advisory Council (PAC) meetings in an alternative format.

For staff, the changes to their work are fundamental. As much as school will be different for students and their families, it will also be different for staff. 
The driver for all these changes is the COVID-19 virus and the Public Health orders that we must honour in order to reopen our school. Keeping people safe and healthy must be our first priority and to accomplish this, school as we have come to know it is not possible. This does not mean that we cannot offer a rich and engaging educational experience. It just means that it will be a different experience that we have all grown accustomed to. 
I am looking forward to meeting and getting to know every member of the Abby Sr. community. A special welcome to our new grade nines and any other students who are just beginning at Abby Sr. - like you, this is my first year at our school. I know that we will get through this together, and that we and our school will emerge stronger for having to focus on looking after each other.
Best wishes for a healthy and successful school year.

​Phil Cookson
Abbotsford Senior Secondary School
Home of the Panthers
33355 Bevan Avenue
Abbotsford, BC V2S 0E7
604 853 3367