Coronavirus Updates

The school is taking precautionary steps to respond to the  COVID-19 pandemic. 
This page will be kept up to date with the latest information from the school.

 


 

COVID-19 Update

10 August 2020

Masks

On 3 August 2020, the NSW Government updated their advice on the use of masks in high-risk settings to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  This advice has been supported by the AISNSW and further information on the advice can be found here.

Whist not mandatory, the use of masks is highly recommended:
- in indoor settings where physical distancing is hard to maintain, such as on public transport or in supermarkets
- in indoor settings with a higher risk of transmission, such as for the staff of hospitality and customer-facing venues i.e. cafes, restaurants, pubs and clubs
- during attendance at places of worship.

In line with the School’s mitigation strategies, we have asked that all staff within the Kitchen (Wolaroi & PLC), Canteen, Health Centre and Bus / Duty Drivers to begin using masks.

NSW Health has issued some general guidance on cloth masks: click here.

As a reminder, masks are not a substitute for any of the School’s guidelines that are already in place:
- stay home if unwell and get tested
- maintain physical distancing
- maintain good hand hygiene.

Testing protocols

A reminder regarding testing protocols. If a member of your household has been tested for COVID-19 and has not received a test result, we ask that you do not attend campus until notification of the result. This is in place to protect the School community given the nature of our ‘high-risk’ setting as a Boarding school and the increased possibility of community transmission.

Consider when and how you travel

NSW Health recommends that the community avoids non-essential travel at this critical time. If you do need to travel, think about how you may adapt your travel habits to help keep you and the community safe. 

Venues of concern

NSW Health continues to update the list of venues of concern. Check here for the latest locations:

https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/latest-news-and-updates

If you have been to any of the listed places on the dates and times indicated, you must self-isolate and get tested immediately.

We continue to monitor the situation closely and adjust our mitigation strategies accordingly.

Many thanks for your support, understanding and patience.

James Boyd
DEPUTY PRINCIPAL
 


 

Term 3 Return to School Guidelines

20 July 2020

The Deputy Principal has issued guidelines to parents, students and staff for a safe return to campus in Term 3. In particular, there are special requirements for those who have travelled to Victoria during the holidays. Details are provided in the PDF link below:

Term 3 Commencement Letter


 

Co-curricular update for Term 3

As per earlier communication from Dr Parry, we have been busily planning the reintroduction of our co-curricular programs for Term 3. Whilst we will have a slightly altered program as well as additional protective measures in place to manage the safety of our community, we are so pleased to be resuming the majority of our co-curricular programs next term. Details are in the PDF link below:

Term 3 Co-curricular Activities

 


 

COVID-19 Communication and Campus Closure Plan

29 May 2020

Dear Parents and Carers,

We have recently worked to develop and implement a contingency plan for school closure in the case of a confirmed COVID-19 case at school (or another State or local shutdown).

We would like to share our communication plan and decision-making process should we need to close the campus. 

NSW Health will advise the Principal if a confirmed case of COVID-19 has an impact on our school. All other confirmed cases are a personal matter for those involved and they will be managed directly by NSW Health. People assessed as being a ‘close contact’ of a member of the community are identified and contacted by NSW Health and given appropriate advice. Schools are bound by obligations under the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) and the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002 (NSW) to not disclose the identity of a person with COVID-19 except to authorised people.

Communication Plan 
Immediately following notification of a decision to close the campus, as per advice from NSW Health, the communication protocol will include: 

  • The Principal will be notified by NSW Health.
  • Communications will go out to all faculty, staff, students, and parents regarding campus closure via SMS and email. 
  • Parents and students will be provided with specific instructions for student departure if this occurs during a school day.
  • Communication of the process and status of the campus closure will continue via sms, email and the school website until we return to normal face-to-face operations.

Campus Closure Process 
Throughout any closure, the steps taken by the school will be under the guidance and advice of NSW Health. If the school is advised of a positive case of COVID-19 during a school day: 

  • Day students will need be collected by parents. Please make sure that you know your child’s day house and collection point (contained in this document).
  • Boarding students will return to their boarding houses immediately and will be temporarily quarantined or sent home depending on the circumstances.

Parents please adhere to these guidelines to minimise traffic delays as best as possible. Following the official closure of the campus, we will sanitize all areas of the school.

Collection Points

Day House Pick up zone and details
Blackman  Senior School Bus Bay
 Enter via Bathurst Rd Gates, exit via Cox Ave South Gate
Brown  Allenby Road Gate
Dean  Cox Avenue South Gate
 Please do not block the gate
Douglas  1st Gate to Wolaroi Boarding House
 Icely Road
Gordon  Cox Avenue North Gate
 Please do not block the gate
McLachlan  Weymouth Boarding House Gate
 Allenby Road
Richards  2nd Gate to Wolaroi Boarding House
 Icely Road
Williams  Junior School pick up area
 Enter at Cox Ave South Gate, exit at Cox Ave North Gate
Junior School  Junior School pick up area
 Enter at Cox Ave South Gate, exit at Cox Ave North Gate
Pre-Kinder  Pre-Kinder pick up area

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Boarding
Closure of a Boarding House (or Houses) – if deemed necessary – will be completed within 24 hours of the notice for campus closure. Boarding families have been encouraged to prepare a plan for this circumstance. Parents please adhere to these guidelines to minimise traffic delays as best as possible.

Academics
The transition back to remote teaching will happen 24 hours after the announcement of school campus closure. Information regarding timetables and commencement will be sent to students and parents via email.

FAQs
How will I be informed if there is a school closure?  
The School will send a notification via SMS and will send a follow-up message via email. 

Where do I collect my children?   
Junior School children will be collected from the normal pickup zone while Pre-Kinder will be collected as normal from their room. Senior School pickup areas are detailed above and in the map below.
 
What if I have to pick up children from Senior and Junior?  
Pre-Kinder and Junior School students will be collected first. Siblings in the Senior School will be able to travel home with them. 
Will the children be prepared to know what to do? Yes, we will be conducting a practice in Week 6. 

How soon do I need to be there?  
Junior School parents should collect their children within 1 hour of receiving the SMS. Senior School parents will be advised a slightly later time for collection.

Will there be a bus service?  
No, there will be no School bus services running and students will not be able to use public transport. 

Will there be supervision until I can get there?  
Yes. Senior day students will be supervised in the DPA until 6pm while Junior School students will be supervised in Room 52 adjacent to the pick-up area until 5pm.

What if my child is a Boarder?  
Mr Curran will be sharing specific information for the process for our Boarding students. 

What if my child drives to and from School?
Students who drive to School can drive home and take their siblings but cannot take other students home.

Can my child go with someone else if I am unable to collect them from School?  
Supervision will be provided and children will need to be collected by their parents or their authorised emergency contact. 

How soon will we have information on who the infected person has been in contact with?  
Contact tracing is expected to take approximately 48 hours.

If we suspect our child has been in contact with the sick person, what should we do?  
If your child is identified as a close contact you will be advised by NSW Health. If you need advice or have questions, call the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080. 

Will the children be sent home with everything they need for learning?  
Yes.

How will the school keep us up to date?  
There will be regular communication via email.

How soon will the school reopen?  
The School will be guided by NSW Health on this and information will be shared as soon as possible by Dr Parry. 

Can we take Boarders home?  
Boarding students will return to their Houses and be collected by their parents.

Testing update
If your child is kept home and is displaying any of the following symptoms: fever, cough, sore/scratchy throat, shortness of breath, loss of smell, loss of taste, runny nose, muscle pain, joint pain, diarrhoea, nausea/vomiting and loss of appetite then please ensure they are tested for COVID-19. Please inform the School’s Health Centre sickbay@kws.nsw.edu.au about the test and notify them of the negative result when it comes through. This will allow the Health Centre to monitor those being tested and will assist the School and NSW Health with contact tracing if a positive test was to occur.

Year Group Locations for Week 6

Year Group Area
Year 7  Year 7 Quadrangle
Year 8  Between Bennett / Science and Music Area
Year 9  Maths / Bennett Quadrangle
Year 10  In front of DPA / Amphitheatre
Year 11  Between the Canteen and Health Centre, above the oval
Year 12  Wolaroi Courtyard 

 

 

 

James Boyd
Deputy Principal

Downloads:

Evacuation Map

Update Term 2, Week 5


 

Principal's Update on Co-curricular at KWS

22 May 2020

Dear Parents and Carers,

I am very aware that our students and their families - indeed families all over the nation - are greatly missing their co-curricular sport and activities. Following for your information is an update on our current situation.

Term 2

We are carefully following Government guidelines to inform our School practices around the resumption of Co-curricular activities. While there are a range of restrictions around sporting and recreational activities currently in place, we are not in a position to offer formal co-curricular sport training or games this term. Some of the rules around community sporting activities have recently been relaxed, but the current restrictions will still prevent us from running regular training sessions or games for the remainder of the term. This will also apply to Cadet home training and Performing Arts ensemble rehearsals.

Term 3

We are currently looking at options for the resumption of some of our activities for Term 3. These are exceptional circumstances, and we must acknowledge that Co-curricular programs cannot proceed as normal. Whilst we highly value these experiences as part of the holistic educational offering at KWS, we must consider the associated risks that resuming our regular program next term would expose the School community to. We have a duty of care to protect the health and wellbeing of the KWS students, staff and community and this is central to all of our decision making processes.

Our regular Winter sporting competitions involve close mixing and contact with members of the local Orange community, and communities further afield. Sports such as Girl’s Football and the ISA Rugby competition also involve extensive travel. These elements of our regular competitive programs have the potential to expose the KWS community to risks which we must consider for our School context.

A number of my fellow Independent School Heads have concerns regarding the resumption of competition sport. Next Friday I will be meeting with the ISA Board where we will discuss the future of 2020 Rugby competition. Each school has differing contexts and particular challenges and our regional location, lengthy travel and large boarding school environment present a number of risks that must be carefully considered.

In the coming weeks we shall also need to make decisions concerning our involvement in a number of Orange-based sporting competitions.

We do not know what the next few months will look like, and can only plan with the information we currently have at our disposal. Whilst we understand that there may be considerable disappointment from within our community if we are unable to participate in some activities and competitions, we must consider the risks that are presented and understand all our decisions will be based upon the health and wellbeing of students, staff and community. Unfortunately, the disruptions caused by COVID-19 have seen many around the world miss opportunities this year - our Olympic athletes readily spring to mind.

We will apply the same parameters of managing risk around the resumption of Cadet training and Performing Arts ensembles. A decision about these activities for Term 3 will be made in the coming weeks.

With very best wishes,

Dr Andrew Parry
PRINCIPAL


 

Useful links for the School Community

Where can I find the latest health information on COVID-19?

The Department of Health has posted several publications here: https://www.health.gov.au/resources/collections/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-resources

The World Health Organisation’s advice for the public can be found here: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for- public

The Australian Government has a dedicated COVID-19 Health Information Line, which operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week: 1800 020 080

Where can I find advice on supporting my child through this event?

For parents and carers:

For young people:

During these difficult times, maintaining positive wellbeing may be challenging. Relying on news from mainstream media or social media which may be sensational or exaggerate issues can further increase stress and anxiety. It is important to seek information from trusted sources. Below are some resources available to support all children and young people with their wellbeing.

The World Health Organisation has developed a handout on helping children cope with stress during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Head to Health
It’s natural to feel stressed, worried, anxious, bored or depressed as the Covid-19 pandemic impacts our mental health and wellbeing. This page covers facts about the outbreak as well as tips for maintaining good mental health and how to access mental health services. Psychological tips for coping can help you with managing anxiety and worry about Covid-19.

Reach Out
Self-care can help you feel a little better and can give you a sense of control in a very uncertain time. Here is a list of self-care activities that you can do from home.

Beyond Blue
When children and young people are able to self-manage their emotions their emotions, they feel more confident, capable and in control. Helping children and young people manage their emotions is important for fostering positive mental health and wellbeing.

Student Wellbeing Hub
The Student Wellbeing Hub is  a place for educators, parents and students to build safe, inclusive and connected communities that promote wellbeing and learning. 

Kids Helpline
KHL provides free, confidential support and counselling for children aged 5-25.

Headspace
Headspace provides mental health services for aged 12-25 including information and resources, as well as online and telephone services. This factsheet is to support young people with Covid-19 related stress.

For younger students:

 

School TV Wellbeing Checklists

In this Special Report, adult carers will be provided with a checklist that can be used as a guide in determining if there is any cause for concern. We hope you take time to reflect on the information offered in this Special Report, and as always, we welcome your feedback.

If you do have any concerns about the wellbeing of your child, please contact the school for further information or seek medical or professional help.

For primary students:  https://schooltv.me/wellbeing_news/special-report-wellbeing-checklist-primary

For secondary students: https://schooltv.me/wellbeing_news/special-report-wellbeing-checklist-secondary

Click here to go to information on the School's Remote Learning Program
 


 

Previous Updates