COVID-19 guidelines for a safe return to school - St Joseph's Narrabeen

COVID-19 guidelines for a safe return to school

Below are the current COVID-19 guidelines for parents and students, including visiting the school grounds and when to stay home.

Students should be at school unless:

  • they have a medical certificate which states that they are unable to return to school due to an ongoing medical condition and the expected timeframe
  • they are currently unwell.

Anyone who is unwell, or has even mild flu-like symptoms, should be tested. (See chart for more detail).COVID-19 FLOW CHART

Parents and carers are allowed on school sites or at off-site school events held during school hours for the following purposes only:

  • to attend P&F and Advisory Group meetings
  • to attend essential and scheduled parent and carer meetings with teachers and/or school executives
  • to collect their child if they are unwell or where they have been asked to arrange for a COVID-19 test
  • to collect or purchase uniforms
  • to work in the canteen or uniform shop
  • to fulfil educational support roles in Principal approved scheduled programs
  • parent orientation meetings and ‘meet the teacher’ meetings with school staff for all year/stage groups. Meetings should be limited to 1 hour where possible.
  • Please note – No parents, carers or spectators are to be on site for any sporting event

School Hygienists will continue to support schools until the end of Term 1.

Staff, parents, carers and students may choose to wear a face mask but are not required to wear one while on the school site.

Where possible, students will stay within their relevant cohort group (i.e. class, year group, or stage) for all learning activities within their school in order to limit close contacts to the relevant student cohort.

Schools can now turn on bubblers for students to use.

Interschool Activities, excursions and camps can continue where interstate border requirements permit. International excursions must be postponed until further notice.

Orientation programs for Kindergarten and Year 7 can continue. Parents and carers of Kindergarten and Years 1, 2 and 7 students and new students to the school will be allowed on the school site to drop off their children at their classes for the first few weeks of Term 1

Physical distancing and hygiene measures must be adhered to at all times. All attendees must sign in and out on arrival and departure.


  • Selection trials, interschool sport and physical activity can recommence, inclusive of travel outside the local community and which meets compliance with external venue restrictions.
  • Zone carnivals (swimming, cross country, athletics), round robins and gala days can also recommence and must comply with external venue restrictions.
  • Students from different schools are permitted to mix while participating in events but avoid mixing of student groups when not participating.
  • Students participating in weekly sport and physical activities, including recreational activities, where possible, are to remain within their regular cohort to limit the mixing of students between cohort groups.
  • Selection trials for representative pathway events or school placement (e.g. sport high school enrolment) may now recommence.
  • No parents, carers or other spectators are permitted to attend activities held on school sites during school hours.


Most schools will be planning a liturgical celebration for the opening school year.  Schools are reminded of the following restrictions:

  • Places of public worship may have a maximum of 100 people, subject to the one person per 4 square metre rule.
  • Where a place of public worship has more than one separate area, each area may have a maximum of 100 people, subject to the one person per 4 square metre rule.
  • A religious service in an indoor area other than a place of public worship may also have a maximum of 100 people, subject to the one person per 4 square metre rule.
  • An outdoor religious service is subject to the one person per 2 square metre rule.
  • The venue must have a COVID-19 Safety Plan and be registered as a COVID Safe venue to keep staff, volunteers and visitors safe.
  • People attending a religious service will be required to provide their name and contact details when they enter so that they can be used for contact tracing.

Group singing and chanting remains a high-risk activity for transmission should someone involved be infected.

  • No more than 5 performers should sing indoors, with 1.5m between performers and 5m between performers and the audience.
  • In indoor areas, audience members and congregants should not participate in singing or chanting.
  • In outdoor areas, if the event is one where the audience or congregation are likely to participate in singing or chanting, such as religious services, audience members and congregants older than 12 years should wear a face mask.

To minimise infection risk:

  • all singers should face forwards and not towards each other
  • maintain physical distancing of 1.5 metres between each other and any other performers, and
  • keep 5 metres distancing from all other people including the audience and conductor.


  • Players of non-reeded woodwind instruments (such as flutes and recorders) should maintain a physical distance of 3 metres from others in the direction of airflow, and 1.5 metres in all other directions.
  • Players of all other musical instruments (including reeded woodwind instruments) should maintain a physical distance of 1.5 metres between each other and the audience/conductor.
  • Ensembles and other musical groups should rehearse and perform outdoors or in large, well-ventilated indoor spaces.

 School performances, productions, plays and concerts can continue. These events must comply with the NSW Health requirements for COVID safe events.

External providers delivering educational services including sport and physical activity programs can be on site providing they have a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place.

For further details, please see here for the updated advice from January 18, 2021

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