Today we announced in our Commotion Students and Parents group, that we have no choice but to suspend classes until further notice. This is a time of great sadness for the Commotion community. We are launching optional online services for our students, so that they still have some opportunities to continue to learn, dance and connect. In this challenging and daunting time, children need dance as an outlet and a distraction. We are grateful for our incredibly supporting Commotion family, and our amazing team, for helping us pivot and adapt quickly to this crisis. To all of our community out there, stay safe. Reach out to us if you need some support. Together we can get to the other side of this. There is light at the end of the tunnel

Firstly, we would like to start by saying THANK YOU to all of our families for your continued support during this extremely difficult and unfortunate time. We know that there is a lot of uncertainty and fear at the moment. In times like this, I am most grateful for the strong community that we have created here at Commotion.

We have some FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (and answers) to help make sure all of our families are kept up to date with important information regarding Commotion and how classes might be affected by the global COVID-19 pandemic.

>> ARE CLASSES RUNNING? For now, classes will be continuing as normal at Commotion. We will remain open in line with the local schools - until advised otherwise by the authorities. We understand that some after-school sports have cancelled, however because dance is not a contact sport it is difficult to compare. I have conferred with fellow dance studio owners in Australia, and at this stage most dance studios (182 out of 200 polled) are choosing to remain open until told otherwise. I believe that the longer we can keep maintaining some normal routine for children (whilst still being advised by health experts) the better for their mental health and overall wellbeing. We all know the incredible benefits of dance, and at times like this they are even more important. Dance is a creative, physical and emotional outlet for children and teenagers. The quote from the Prime Minister from his most recent press conference is “Settings like gyms, indoor fitness centres and swimming pools are not required to close at this time providing they meet these requirements for social distancing and hand hygiene.” If schools do close, then we will be likely be required to suspend classes at the studio temporarily. >> WHAT MEASURES ARE IN PLACE AT THE STUDIO TO REDUCE THE RISK OF SPREADING THE VIRUS? We have implemented some additional measures at the studio to try and keep our studio space safe and healthy, in whatever way we can. We have increased our cleaning efforts, with extra focus on disinfecting surfaces and handles.We have hand sanitizer and wipes available at reception and in the class rooms.Our teachers are reminding students to cover their mouth if they sneeze or cough, and for students to keep their hands away from their mouth and eyes.Our staff are doing the online COVID-19 infection control training course as provided by The Australian Government.During operating hours, we are disinfecting door handles every 15 minutes.We have posters up in the bathrooms reminding all patrons to wash hands thoroughly.We have temporarily stopped using handheld props in READY SET DANCE and READY SET BALLET.Teachers have been advised to minimise physical interactions like hi-fives etc. and to try to avoid any choreography that involves partner-work.We are asking and reminding parents to please keep your children at home if they are experiencing any flu-like symptoms. Better to rest at home if unsure.We will be opening the large roller door to increase the waiting area for our studio at our busiest times, allowing for social distancing measures for parents waiting.We have an flexible make-up lesson policy, and the luxury of many classes in our weekly schedule so that classes can be easily made up another week in a different session. (Make up lessons can also be used any time later this year - as additional sessions).

>> IF I AM STILL UNCOMFORTABLE SENDING MY CHILD TO DANCE AT THIS TIME, WHAT SHOULD I DO? If your household has someone who is elderly, or at risk, and you have decided you want to self-isolate for a few weeks as a family, then we understand. Missed classes can be made up at any point in 2020. Right now we are imploring our families to please consider waiting to see what the government decides to do with schools over the next couple of weeks, rather than cancelling enrolment. >> CAN MISSED CLASSES BE CREDITED TO FUTURE TERMS? We have a flexible make up class policy. Any missed class can be made up any time in 2020, at ANY other class in the same age group. For example, if your child misses 3 Friday Junior Jazz classes, they could attend 3 additional Junior classes later in the year on top of their normal class - like a Junior Hip Hop, or a Junior Jazz class held on a different day of the week. If we are required to close for a short time, with local schools - we will be making up for those weeks later in the year in the school holidays. >> WILL COMMOTION SWITCH TO ONLINE CLASSES? If the situation gets to the point that schools close for an extended period of time, we will be offering a range of online services for our students to be able to continue dance training with some semblance of normalcy in their life. This would include online interacting lessons, video tutorials, a library of online dance classes and additional resources for our students. Whilst we understand this doesn’t compare to the experience of being in class at the studio, it would enable us to continue to pay our staff, and would provide our students with valuable content, as well as giving them something to keep occupied and active whilst in lock-down. Our team are currently planning for this contingency, however we are hoping it doesn’t come to this. >> WILL COMMOTION SURVIVE THIS PANDEMIC SO THAT IT IS STILL THERE FOR OUR CHILDREN WHEN EVERYTHING GOES BACK TO NORMAL? Commotion employs over 30 staff and each of them rely on their wages for living expenses. With your support, we will be able to continue to provide high quality dance and performing arts training to our students, and be a strong dance studio community. Commotion has been a second home for thousands of children and teenagers over the last 18 years. A sanctuary where they can feel connected, be inspired, make friends, build confidence and self esteem, learn incredible skills and create magical memories. We look forward to many more years of being able to offer our unique services to the community, and your support during this difficult time is appreciated. Please consider the impact of enrolment cancellation at this time. >> WE WOULD LIKE TO HELP, WHAT CAN WE DO? Parents please stay home if you are sickKeep your children home if they are sickRemind your children about washing their hands etc.Drop off, where appropriate with ages - to avoid too many people in our waiting roomOr wait in your car, and have a nap, watch some Netflix on your phone, listen to music, enjoy a podcast or read a book.Consider continuing membership, even if your child cannot attend for a short while, so that we can be here to provide our services after this crisisVolunteers to help our daily cleaning crew are welcome - please contact us if you would be interested in helping us keep our studio super-sanitized during this time, for the health and safety of our students. Thank you to all of our students, families, teachers and team. These are challenging times, but together we can get through this. We have to weather the storm, but it will pass. Stay positive, stay healthy. Big love ❤️ from all of us here at team Commotion. PS - if you have questions or concerns, we encourage you to chat with us. Call on 0402 119 073. We are here to provide as much support as we can, and it is important to us that all of our families feel welcome to reach out. We will continue to update everyone as the situation develops

Studio Gazette