16 MARCH 2020 9.00PM
RE: CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) UPDATE
The Prime Minister announced Sunday afternoon, following a meeting with all Premiers and Chief Ministers, that all those arriving from overseas from midnight on 15 March will be required to self-isolate for two weeks.
These measures expand those previously in place only in relation to certain countries advised to you previously. Updated information on travel restrictions and isolation requirements are available on the Australian Government’s website.
We continue to expect that all parents and carers within the College community will ensure that they are aware of and comply with these Government requirements.
In light of unfolding events, the College has taken the decision to cancel the Senior School Manila Mission Trip and postpone preparations for the Junior School Safe Haven Mission Trip until further notice.
At the College, we note that isolation is also required for those who have had contact with somebody with COVID-19. “Contact” is defined as spending more than 15 minutes face-to-face with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 or sharing a closed space for more than 2 hours with someone diagnosed with COVID-19. This includes having this type of contact with the person 24 hours before they became ill (symptom checker).
Students with flu-like symptoms (fever, cough, sore throat or fatigue) should not come to school until symptoms resolve. If your child manifests these symptoms whilst at school, our Student Services staff will phone you and ask you to pick up your child as soon as possible.
Both the Australian and NSW Governments have considered School closures, however at this stage, have deemed that such action is not prudent.
In the most recent development, Dr Kerry Chant (NSW Chief Health Officer) stated yesterday that schools should expand the range of strategies used to reduce transmission to include avoiding mass gatherings. In support of this request, Charlton will not be holding events which bring parents and friends into the College in groups.
Therefore, we would like to advise we have cancelled the K-4 Parent-Teacher Interviews and the Years 5-12 Parent-Teacher-Student Conferences.
In addition to reducing mass gatherings, until further notice we are also cancelling the following:
- Incursions and on-site gatherings greater than 100 (including Assemblies and Chapels)
- Excursions that are indoor and are in enclosed spaces
In the meantime, while the College remains open, cleaning procedures have been upgraded to include extra disinfecting of door handles, railing surfaces, bus rails and hand rests with the aim to reduce possible transmission through contact.
Of course, your children play a key role in this.
Once again, can I ask that you promote good hygiene practices to your child/ren, and staff will continue to do this at school. Particularly, encourage children to:
- Clean their hands with soap and water for 20 seconds, especially before and after eating, and after using the bathroom;
- Practice cough etiquette – cover their nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with tissue or a flexed elbow;
- Dispose of tissues in the bin immediately;
- Avoid unnecessarily touching mouth, nose and eyes;
- Avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms;
It’s important for us all to be aware of the facts surrounding COVID-19, and a Fact Sheet is available on the NSW Health website. Management of COVID-19 and the safety of our students is a priority for us all. I thank you for your ongoing support and understanding during these extraordinary times.
We will continue to keep you updated if there are significant changes or new developments, but also encourage all parents and carers to remain personally informed of the latest Government advice.
Please continue to pray for each other and the health of our nation.