Yesterday (12 September) the first sound of the bell of the new school year and for the first time since the outbreak of the pandemic the pupils and teachers returned to the classroom without a mask. Between the hugs of the students and the enthusiasm of the teachers, a new year has begun for 11,000 students of Legnano. We met the principal Elena Osnaghi ICS manager Bonvesin De La Riva for 9 years, flanked by her collaborators Simona Ambrosetti and Raffaella Gaviani, who told us how the return to school was and what she expects.
How was the return without masks? How was the change for the boys at the institute?
The return was very nice, the kids are much happier without a mask and have finally “discovered” the smile of their teachers. This year we have also been able to reunite the benches and, even if some distancing rules remain, we have returned to almost normalcy.
What remains of the pandemic experience?
All the technological aspect. We have kept classroom and are ready for digital teaching in case of need, even if our hope is that we will not have to use it for children anymore. The teaching staff is more trained from the point of view of digitization and is more willing to use digital platforms than in previous years. We have the tools and we have implemented the internet line. We will continue to give priority to online meetings and interviews, a method much appreciated by parents and a great plus also for energy saving: meeting online for meetings between teachers allows you to leave lights and heating off at school and save energy.
Will you go back to organizing outings and out-of-school meetings with the kids?
The idea is to return to the pre Covid structure. We would like to go back to school and resume the trip to Berlin “In the footsteps of our roots”, which was skipped due to Covid. The trip was to last 5 days to discover the artistic heritage of the city and we would like to propose it again this year. Then, as every year, we have the Intercultural Week on the program. Last year we also welcomed Ukrainian students who will continue to attend the Institute; the numbers are however small. We also have other surprises but for the moment we cannot reveal them …
As far as the staff is concerned, are there still so many professorships to be filled? Have you already met the new principals of the city schools?
Most of the teachers are there, Monday will start with full time. Last Thursday, during a meeting in the municipality with the administration, I also got to know the principals of the other Comprehensive Institutes of Legnano, all newly appointed: the intention is to maintain coordination between us and the territory. Being able to leave on September 12 with almost all the teachers is excellent.
This year you will also have to deal with the new figure of the teacher expert in physical education …
Yes, the expert has already arrived and the time has been fixed. We managed to coordinate well because our school schedule is 40 hours and not 28 as in other schools. In that case it would have been more difficult.
As regards the school building, is there any work in progress?
An important structural intervention is nearing completion at the De Amicis primary school, while the municipality has received substantial funding for the Cavour nursery school. The goal is to completely review the organization of the spaces, even internally. The time schedule has not yet been decided.
In view of the winter season, do you fear new restrictions for Covid? Was this return to normality too early?
It is never early to return to normal. It all depends on whether the authorities decide to treat Covid as a flu or if they will return to stricter directives. The school started two days ago and ATS has already sent two faqs with a request for case tracking: a flu is not treated in this way.
By Francesca Bianchi
First bell of the school year, almost 11 thousand students returned to school in Legnano