On March 12th 2020 our school and college year came to an abrupt end with compulsory closures throughout due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Never before has such drastic action been taken in the face of a public health threat, but it was deemed a vital step to stop the spread of this villainous virus in our midst.
Living through COVID-19 has been both challenging and surreal for adults, but must be extremely confusing and life adjusting for our kids. The structure of their daily routines was pulled from under them without warning and they no longer had physical contact with school friends, teachers and more importantly grandparents and extended family.
The return to school is looming and is an important step, one where both school children and college students will need a lot of support and reassurance.
At the moment there is no definite answer to the exact way schools and colleges will operate from September. It is of course reliant on the numbers that we listen out for each evening not rising significantly especially in our own county. Whether it be blended learning, part time attendance or stricter physical distance measures, our children will be returning to a different education system with the main concern being keeping them safe.
And so, the back to school/ college supplies shopping begins. With my own little fella all set to begin his primary school journey it’s seriously been an eye opening experience for me….. but it’s now a fait accompli praise the Lord!!
Here are a few pointers to some of the local stockists who are only too happy to get them to the gates with all that they will need.
DAN FITZGERALDS- Stocking both primary and secondary school uniforms this is a one stop shop for all and the friendly customer service is second to none making it both an easy and enjoyable experience for all.
SHAWS DEPARTMENT STORE- Here you can pick up school uniforms, basics and for the college student there’s a myriad of fab labels under one roof to ensure you are top of the class. Burton’s range of coats for the guys are awesome, ranging from the casual parka to the Uber stylish tailored coats. The Regatta collection has something for everyone and is on sale right now.
HENNEBERYS SPORTS- This is the place to go for your child’s crested school tracksuit…. the quality is superb. This year Henneberys are also selling the school bum bags needed due to COVID-19 to serve as your child’s portable wash bag. And wait there’s more…. they stock the quirkiest range of school bags for miles around.
O’MAHONYS BOOKSHOP- is one of the longest serving businesses in Tralee and takes the tedium of school book buying off your shoulders. Simply hand in or email your list and they do the rest. They even offer a book covering service and will hand everything back to you in one of their on trend school rucksacks if chosen. How easy is that moms??
DUNNES STORES- Where would we be without Dunnes guys? From shirts, trousers, sports separates , even down to new underwear Dunnes have it covered. School lunches thermal vests coffee to get mam and dad out of bed they have it all.
Back to school made easy
For back to school shoes WALSH BROTHERS SHOES and DOWLINGS will guarantee you will put your best foot forward. They will measure your little ones feet and both shops have a large selection of stylish yet durable school footwear.
RADLEYS TRALEE- I absolutely love the range of Nava Design baggage in Radleys. Shoulder bags, laptop bags, iPad carriers- they are all so fab! Full of hidden pockets and compartments they are a must for college kudos. Radleys is a treasure trove for the college guy or gal. Laptops, printers, notebooks, stationery- they have it all under one roof in Rock Street.
So, there you have it
Other things to consider are face masks, sanitizers etc for the surreal times we are living in. Book that back to school haircut ASAP as appointments are well booked up. And you may try your best to get your small folk back into an early bedtime routine in preparation for the early mornings.
*** In years to come Covid-19 will be in the school history books of our younger generations….. how surreal is that?
To quote the ethos of Scoil Eoin- Mol an Óige agus tiocfaidh sí.
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