26 September 2023

Schools free from virus restrictions

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ACT parents and carers have been welcomed back onto school campuses this week as COVID-19 restrictions in schools ease.

Announcing the changes, Minister for Education, Yvette Berry said many of the activities that had been put on hold at the height of the pandemic, like assemblies, excursions, sports, camps, fundraisers and performances, were also being reintroduced.

“We know the opportunity for parents to re-enter public school grounds will be a very welcome change,” Ms Berry said.

“We are excited to welcome parents back to school sites and look forward to continuing to build the important community connections that make our public schools so great.”

She said the Education Directorate had spent two weeks consulting with public school staff and their unions about the next steps for managing the pandemic.

Mr Berry said the Directorate had introduced a COVID-19 Management Plan which was based on Australian Health Protection Principal Committee principles.

The Minister said each school would be in touch with its community about the new arrangements.

She said these arrangements would see different student cohorts allowed to mix once again, no mask mandates for secondary school students, and household contacts able to attend schools if they meet ACT Health’s risk mitigation requirements.

“These changes also don’t mean a complete relaxation of rules,” Ms Berry said.

“Our schools will still need to be COVID-Smart as we all continue to learn to live alongside COVID-19.”

The Directorate’s three-page ACT Public Schools COVID Management Plan, including further information on the new arrangements, can be accessed at this PS News link.

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