The Victorian Government has announced new measures for the Week beginning 28th February, 2022, across all Victorian schools.
Maintaining a physical distance of 1.5 metres will not always be practical in education settings, however it’s important we all do our best to support physical distancing where possible.
The following guidelines outline strategies to support physical distancing within the on-site school environment. This will involve students socially distancing from each other at all times practicable, and from school staff, in particular:
- Waiting patiently for lockers and access to buildings such as classrooms and the
- Maintaining the personal space of others, which means keeping clear of the immediate space around another person, allowing them to feel
Any student and staff who is unwell must not attend school on-site. This includes illness where symptoms are unrelated to COVID, as well as illness where symptoms align with COVID. Please stay home and seek medical advice.
Vital COVID Safe steps
Hand hygiene and social distancing will continue wherever possible in Term 1.
Face masks remain strongly recommended but are not required in secondary schools.
COVID: Reporting a Positive Result
We are required to report the following information to the Department of Education:
- The details of any student who has tested positive and were onsite during their infectious
Please contact our General Office, to notify the school if your child has tested positive to COVID and complete the steps below:
Management of Confirmed Cases and Household Contacts at School
Parents/carers should complete the RA Test portal if a student tests positive to COVID-19 (via a PCR or rapid antigen test).
- Students who report a positive result must isolate for seven days and not attend school during that period.
- Parents/carers should email teachers to let them know that their child will be absent and date of expected return.
- Where a student is a household contact of a positive case (that is, they have spent more than four hours with someone who has COVID-19 inside a house, accommodation, or care facility) they must inform the school and isolate for seven days and not attend school during that
Students must refrain from returning to school if they remain symptomatic, unless it is known that their symptoms are caused by an underlying health condition or
- Students who have completed their 7-day isolation period and are asymptomatic can return safely to school. They do not need to be tested if they have been re-exposed within 30 days of ending their self-isolation.
- Students who test positive on RAT (probable case – asymptomatic) but then test negative on a PCR test within 48hours after the positive RAT test can safely return to school. They should notify the school of a negative PCR test result.
All students are expected to attend onsite. Parent preference is not an approved reason for students to be absent due to COVID-19. Students who are required to isolate or quarantine will be supported in the same way as students with an extended absence due to illness or injury, with learning materials provided to support their continued learning. Schools are not expected to provide a full remote learning program in these circumstances.
Visitors to the School
We are asking that parents/carers and visitors avoid attending the school and minimise time spent in and around the school grounds. If parents/carers have a question, query, payment or even concern to discuss with the school, please make initial contact with the school via email or a phone call. We are required to record everyone who enters the grounds. Visitors to school grounds must comply with vaccination requirements, density limits, QR code check-ins and practise good hand hygiene.
Free Rapid Antigen Testing
Free rapid antigen tests will be made available for all staff and students in Victorian schools for the remainder of Term 1 2022. Twice-a-week testing will be strongly recommended for both students and staff.
The department will supply the tests to our school – you do not need to buy your own. The department will distribute all kits to schools as early as possible.
Students and staff will need to do the tests at home and only need to report a result if it is COVID- positive. Staff and families must report a COVID-positive result to:
- the school by phone or the RA Test Portal; this is so the school can support families, record the absence while in 7-day isolation, and let the rest of the school community know there has been a positive case onsite and that they should monitor for
- the Department of Health via the COVID-19 Positive Rapid Antigen Test Self-Reporting Form or call centre on 1800 675 398.
Information about how to do a test and how to read RAT results, including a how-to video translated into 33 languages, is available online.
We will continue to maximise ventilation through opening windows and doors and setting air conditioners to use outside air, where possible. Ventilation audits and air purifiers have been distributed to our school and placed in appropriate areas throughout the school.
Parents and carers must have had two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine or have a valid medical exception (with limited exceptions) to enter school buildings.
All staff working in schools need to be fully vaccinated or have a verified medical exception.
COVID-19 vaccinations for students are not required for them to attend school but vaccination for students is highly encouraged. For more information on how to book a vaccination, including important information about vaccination for children aged 5 to 11, visit Vaccination information for children and teenagers.
VET in Schools, TAFEs, Non-school Senior Secondary Providers and Other Training Organisations Students can participate in their VET studies, where these are held at TAFEs, RTOs, non-school senior secondary providers, or schools. Students enrolled in a VET subject at a non-school senior secondary provider are not required to be vaccinated to attend onsite learning.
The canteen is now open. Students can use the tables and chairs but are limited by the amount of available seats.
Drink Bottle Refill Stations
Students should bring their own water bottle for use at school as students should not drink directly from drinking fountains at this time. Water refill stations are based around each school to refill student water bottles.
The library is now open.
School excursions, incursions and camps are allowed to take place. For camps and excursions, considerations need to be given to the current levels of COVID-related absences in school communities and staffing pressures that may be associated with the conduct of the activity.
Prior to a student attending a camp or overnight stay, parents/carers will be informed about the COVID Safe measures that will be in place during the camp or activity and must provide permission for their child to attend, including where permission may already have been provided last year.
In addition, parents/carers will be informed that if a confirmed or probable case was present at the camp while infectious, that students may be identified as household-like contacts and be required to quarantine for 7 days.
Staffing our school
I know many of you will have questions about what happens if your child’s teacher gets COVID-19. We will be able to bring in extra teachers and other staff if we need them, and we will be doing everything that we can to make sure our school stays safe and open.