18 MARCH 2020 4.00PM
FACEBOOK CANTEEN UPDATE
Due to limited volunteers in the Canteen, TOMORROW and FRIDAY we will ONLY be accepting orders via Munch Monitor. Unfortunately there will be no over the counter sales or paper bag orders. Due to COVID-19 this situation may carry forward into the next few weeks as we have limited volunteers.
Given the current environment, we are wanting to limit our students and staff from handling cash particularly around food.
To assist us in this process you can upload “snack money” onto your Munch Monitor account for your child to make over the counter sales at the Canteen. You can set a daily limited for spending on Munch Monitor.
18 MARCH 2020 9.00AM
PRIME MINISTER UPDATE
The Prime Minister announced this morning, following a meeting with all Premiers and Chief Ministers last night, a number of further measures in responding to coronavirus (COVID-19).
Effective immediately the travel advice in relation to overseas travel is at Level Four: Do Not Travel.
As described on the Smartraveller website – “At level 4, your health and safety is at extreme risk. This may be because of a high threat of terrorist attack, conflict, violent social unrest, widespread infectious disease or critical levels of violent crime. It could be a combination of risks.” All staff should be advised not to undertake overseas travel.
Effective immediately there is a ban on non-essential gatherings of 100 or more people indoors. States and Territories will be tasked with implementing the restrictions on social gatherings under public health legislation.
The following areas are exempt from the 100 person ban: airports, stations, platforms, stops, trains, trams, buses, medical and health service facilities, emergency service facilities, disability or aged care facilities, correctional facilities, youth justice centres or other places of custody, courts or tribunals, parliaments, food markets, supermarkets, grocery store, retail stores, shopping centres, office buildings, factories, construction sites, mining sites and other workplaces necessary for their normal operation.
Education facilities including schools, universities, and child care facilities will also be exempt from the 100 person indoor ban. However, we advise schools to avoid groups of this size wherever possible.
Schools should remain open. The Prime Minister was very clear that he and all Premier and Chief Ministers, on the basis of expert medical advice, remained of the view that at this stage schools should remain open. The Chief Medical Officer spoke to reinforce this advice based on the experiences overseas and acknowledged the difficulties of schools seeking to meet some of the general social distancing measures.
No school groups should visit aged care facilities. This was part of the measures for protection around aged care facilities.
Social distancing measures, keeping a minimum of 1.5 metres from others where possible and ensuring good hand hygiene were reinforced as a critical measure.
The Prime Minister also reinforced that plans need to be made for any measures put in place to be sustainable for at least six months.
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.
9 March 2020
RE: COVID-19 VIRUS
Further to our reference to the COVID-19 virus in last week’s Newsletter, the College is promoting hygiene education measures to minimise infection as we approach the main cold and ‘flu season of the year.
The College is operating as normal with increased vigilance around hygiene. We have taken steps to increase the awareness of appropriate good hygiene practices to protect against infections. Good hygiene includes:
1. Washing your hands frequently with soap and water, before and after eating, and after going to the toilet
2. Covering your cough and sneeze, disposing of tissues, and using alcohol-based hand sanitiser
3. If unwell, avoiding contact with others (stay more than 1.5 metres from people)
It would appear from current information, that the risk of significant impact on those who are young and healthy is low, we have a duty to protect those who are vulnerable in our families and community who may be infected by us.
We ask that all families be considerate of the health of others. Specifically, we ask that if children have flu-like symptoms, or symptoms of any other illness, that they be kept at home until they are well.
It has now been made clear that if a student or staff member of a school in NSW is diagnosed with COVID-19 or is a close contact of a confirmed case, we will be notified by NSW Health. The public health unit will provide information to us about the appropriate response.
In the event of the College being asked to close, we are well placed to support learning from home. Junior School students will be catered for by teachers setting specific learning tasks through their online reading and maths subscriptions. For students in Years 5-12, learning will be facilitated through our HQ Learning Management system. NESA has provided us with this advice for Year 11-12 students.
As we head towards the Term 1 break, we ask that if you are planning to travel, you follow the Dept of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) advice in relation to travel. Please be aware that DFAT advice continues to update as the impact of the virus changes so you will need to keep abreast of any changes to risk and travel bans.
The Australian Government recently announced that coronavirus travel restrictions have been extended to people travelling to Australia from Iran and South Korea. You can access the updated fact sheets on the department’s website.
I look forward to working together to do our part in protecting those who are vulnerable in our College, families and community.
If you have any questions, please contact the College.