Principals’ Message to parents- 25th February 2021

Dear Parents,

We hope your child has had a wonderful first week back to school on campus. We were delighted to welcome them back, and know that learning alongside their peers at school is best, not just for their academic development, but also their social and emotional development and wellbeing.

Social Gatherings

We need your help to ensure that school remains safe for all students and staff. Please avoid allowing your child to participate in large gatherings outside of school in evenings/weekends. Please make sure that whenever your child is out in public places that he/she is taking necessary precautions (social distancing, face protection, sanitization) so as to minimize risk. Covid-19 is still very active in our wider community and we will continue to monitor positive cases that may occur within our community and will need to return some classes and students to online learning where positive cases appear.

If your child is at all unwell, or a member of your household is unwell, please leave your child at home until you are able to confirm that any illness is not Covid-related. If you suspect Covid, please alert our school doctor, Dr. Sally Gouda (

Parking and Pick-up and Drop-off

We are also very concerned by some of the parking and picking up of students at the end of the school day. We are asking parents and drivers to please not stop on the main road and expect their children to cross the road. We are very concerned that a serious accident could happen and are working to ensure that the recent traffic congestion in the mornings and afternoons is rectified.

Ministry of Education mid-year examinations

Parents of students in Grades 4-11 / Years 5-12 should be aware that we have received updated information regarding Ministry Arabic Studies Exams. We will soon send you further details regarding internal examinations in these grade/year groups when we have clarity on the full details.

Please have a wonderful, and safe, weekend.

Kind Regards

Ms Allison Fleet and Mr Matt Topliss

School Principals

G9/Y10 Ministry Exams Update

Dear Grade 9 / Year 10 Parents,

Following the communication we sent to all Grades/Years yesterday regarding Ministry exams, we received updated information late in the afternoon yesterday via the Ministry of Education.

All students in Grade 9 / Year 10 will sit for a combined Arabic / National Social Studies exam on March 7th at 9:00 a.m.  This exam will be 2 hours in duration.

Students will not sit a mid-year Religion exam; instead they will sit a religion exam at the end of the year.

Arabic teachers will clarify for students the expectations for these exams and students will receive further information as to the location of their exam scheduled for March 7th.

We sincerely apologise for any confusion this has caused, but can only respond to information as and when we receive through official sources.

Kind Regards,

Allison Fleet & Matt Topliss

School Principals

El Alsson Uniform Store On Campus

Dear Parents,

We are preparing our own New El Alsson Uniform Store on campus. Hopefully will be ready within a week. If you need to purchase any uniform items at the moment, kindly send an email to with your detailed order, quantity and size along with your phone number please. We shall prepare it for you and you can come pick them up from school.

Thank you



5 positives from the pandemic for school leaders

Whatever the future holds, school leaders must take confidence from how they adapted in 2020, says Matt Topliss

Matt Topliss

Coronavirus: Five positives school leaders can take from the pandemic

2020 provided challenges to school leaders across the world like never before – and taught us a lot, too.

We can now tentatively start to think about a post-pandemic world. But we must ensure that we do not ignore the opportunities the crisis has afforded us to develop our schools and the young people and staff within them.

After all, strategic planning and further development must continue as we navigate our way out of the crisis just as surely as we navigated our way through it.

Coronavirus: What schools have learned from the pandemic

Here are five positives we must remember whatever the future holds

1. Reshaping the school day

The pandemic resulted in a shortened school day, a reduced movement of students between classes, split and reduced break times and a greater reliance on digital and online learning.

In my school all these areas have been seen as huge benefits by all key stakeholders as this has allowed staff and students to rediscover their school-life balance and parents to organise their time more efficiently and even miss the dreaded Cairo traffic – an issue known the world over.

It will vary by location and setting, but leaders should not overlook what can be retained from these changes.

The school day has been so embedded into society, we never dared imagine it could be different. Now we have seen that it can be changed – even if through enforced circumstances – we should not forget what we have learned.

2. Improved logistics

As a large school, it has been essential that all aspects of school life have been organised in a more efficient and effective way.

This has included our arrival and departure arrangements in the morning and afternoon, our bus protocols and safety expectations and even how students eat and socialise while on campus.

Cashless payments and the acceptance of visitors on to site have also been part of life now and will continue to be.

It shows that if we want to make changes to areas of school life that have in the past felt too entrenched, it can be done.

3. Pupil wellbeing

The development of the school’s provision of wellbeing resources and more attention to the psychological development of students has been a central theme since schools reopened at the start of the academic year.

This is an area that all of education should welcome and continue to build on.

4. Reconnecting with staff and their development

One of the biggest concerns I had was the impact that ex-pat staff felt from not having the day-to-day interactions with their children and with each other.

This is an issue in all locations, but for international staff especially not being able to return to their home countries, welcome visitors or see loved ones could have had a significant impact on wellbeing.

So to see staff returning to school, to their classrooms and making a difference to young people provided a “bounce” with morale, even with anti-Covid measures in place. It was a powerful reminder of how important a motivated and positive workforce is to school life.

We must ensure that, as leaders, we focus on staff and their development as a mission-critical area of our planning.

5. Focusing clearly on priorities

Finally, the pandemic perhaps brought clarity to help us treasure what is important within our schools and find ways to maintain it: quality teaching for our pupils and that sense of school community.

After all, it was fundamental to the continued development and reopening of our schools that we embraced the possibilities and opportunities that were presented to ensure we delivered our number one goal: great teaching.

This willingness to adapt and the mindset change it has brought are something we should not take for granted – or let fade away.

We have seen what we can achieve when we need to, so let’s ensure that we keep that so that whatever the future holds, we are always ready.

Matt Topliss is British school principal at El Alsson British and American International School New Giza, Egypt