As you know we have received word that our tour carrier South African Airways (SAA) is in financial trouble. We have been following developments over the last month and after meetings with the School Executive and taking all the available factors into consideration we have decided to cancel our reservation with SAA and book Emirates Airlines for our forthcoming St Stephen’s Global tour of South Africa in April.
This was a decision based on all of the available information, in particular, reliable media sources, people we know living in South Africa and our travel agent and industry sources. SAA of course were not a reliable source as they claim ‘business as usual’ as airlines and companies often do, even when on the verge of collapse and bankruptcy. In particular our concerns related to:
safety issues when we know the airline is in financial trouble and cutting expenditure
reliability issues with airline cancellations occurring and the possibility of SAA collapsing while our students are on tour in South Africa!
Even though no one can be certain of the future of SAA, after taking everything into account, we have now booked Emirates Airlines – a high quality and reliable carrier. Emirates were the best alternative airline given dates and available seats for such a group. The flights via Dubai will be longer but we take comfort in the airline’s reputation and reliability. There will be no change to the cost of the tour for our families and the tour will occur at approximately the same time (there may be one day adjustment at either end).
We are currently examining the flight times and checking our bookings and itinerary. We will be in touch shortly with specific flight numbers and times and confirmation of the itinerary and activities.
Thank you for your ongoing support for this important tour.
I want to keep you informed of the situation regarding South African Airlines.
Our travel agent has brought to our attention some industry information indicating the South African Airways business is struggling at this time. Some media reports also confirm this issue. We have been in touch with our travel agent and travel insurance people to explore our options if we are unable to fly with SAA in April 2020. Our airline deposits appear to be covered by our insurance policy and we are investigating other travel options if needed.
At this stage we are waiting on any further information from SAA and monitoring the situation. Our tour plans, fund-raising and preparations need to continue as planned.
We hope and pray this issue does not affect our tour of South Africa in April. We will keep you informed of any relevant developments.
If you have any questions I can help you with please be in touch via email (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Our next get together is sure to be a great night – the Invictus and cultural immersion night! This will be held on Monday the 25th of November at the Carramar campus running from 4pm – 8pm. We will hopefully return to the Duncraig campus at approximately 8.30pm, however, students can text you when we’re on our way. We will be taking the Duncraig students by mini-bus to Carramar and will return to the Duncraig campus at approximately 8.30pm where parents can pick their children up. If you would rather pick them up from Carramar then please let us know in advance for transport booking purposes. Students can wear the sports uniform on this day.
The evening will begin with a look at the different languages of South Africa and in particular Afrikaans and Xhosa where we will learn a few common phrases to help us when we are there.
This will be followed by some pizza (so please bring $5 and any snacks) before we settle in to watch the movie Invictus which is set during the time that apartheid was being dismantled. The fabulous Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon play the roles of Nelson Mandela and Francois Pienaar focusing on their critical interaction in the healing process of the South African nation.
Keep going with your fundraising activities. We are hearing some great stories and can’t wait to hear you share your experiences on this night.
If there are any questions then please do not hesitate to contact one of us.
A massive congratulations to all the students, parents and staff who were involved with organising and running the African Drumming night last Friday. We think it was a great success and thank all of you for helping support the students’ fundraising efforts.
If you could now please start bringing in your money to either Miss Everett, Mr Batten or myself or transfer it via the fundraising link that would be great – we would like to finalise the fundraising amounts before we start our car wash fundraiser later this term. If you have any queries then please do not hesitate to contact me.
I hope you’re all looking forward to the wonderful drumming experience that ‘Akwaaba’ will be providing us with this Friday. The event runs from 6.30pm to approximately 7.30pm and then the students will need to assist with packing up at the end of the night – we will hopefully have this finished in 30-45 minutes.
I would also like to remind those preparing salads for the night to please ensure there are no nuts in the salad.
This is a reminder to all Duncraig students to please email me by lunch time on Monday 21st any extra tickets you have sold since our meeting on Thursday as I need to finalise orders for the food. Thank you to those who have already done so. Carramar students, if you could please email Mr Batten or myself your final ticket sales too that would be great.
Could you please meet Miss Everett and myself in A5 during recess this Thursday 17th to discuss the African Drumming Night. We will need to know how many tickets you have sold or are expecting to sell by the drumming night as well as what plate of salad you will be bringing so please discuss this with your parents. Looking forward to it.
If you would like to make a deposit of any money that your son/daughter has raised then you can do it via the above link. You MUST ensure you state your son/daughter’s name in the box provided as well as a reference:
ie. Josh Brown SAF Fund
If not, the finance department will not know who to allocate funds to as it is a generic link and not specific to individual students.
Alternatively, students can bring in any money raised and hand it to Miss Everett, Mr Batten or myself and we will pass it onto the finance department
If you have any questions then please do not hesitate to contact one of us.