Information about Coronavirus

Important Advice for Families

Sunday 05/04/2020

Dear Parents and Families

Please find attached a message from the Principal in regards to the latest coronavirus information from the School.

School Coronavirus Update

Tuesday 24/03/2020

Dear Parents and Families

Leanyer School is working in conjunction with the NT Department of Education.  We are receiving updates every day from government authorities and are making sure that our school is safe.

Leanyer School will communicate updates relating to your child’s school and Coronavirus with you via our School Stream app. The advice that I will be providing is from the updates that we are receiving regularly from the Department of Education which is informed advice from the Australian and Northern Territory Government.

Our primary focus is ensuring that we continue to provide education in a safe environment. This includes an increased focus on practising good hygiene in our school, supporting students who may be feeling anxious about the current situation and continuing to deliver high quality education.

If your child is unwell please keep them at home. You have the right to keep your child at home following the advice from our government on social distancing and isolating at home. Isolation doesn’t mean not staying in touch with family and friends. It is very important to continue to do this. Check in daily with your teacher during the week and you loved ones regularly. Students can learn to use technology to aid this new way of socialisation.

NAPLAN Update

On Friday 20 March 2020, state, territory and federal Education Ministers decided that NAPLAN will not proceed in 2020 due to the ongoing impact of COVID-19. The NAPLAN test window was scheduled to be held from 12 to 22 May. The wellbeing and safety of our staff and students is our highest priority at this time and the decision to not proceed with NAPLAN 2020 has been made to enable schools to focus on the delivery of continued learning for students and preparedness for emergency planning.

The decision not to proceed with NAPLAN in 2020 also means that the scheduled testing of the NAPLAN Online platform for yesterday, known as the Coordinated Practice Test (CPT), did not proceed.

Parent Teacher Interviews

Unfortunately due to the current situation around COVID-19 and ‘social distancing’ Leanyer School has decided to postpone Parent Teacher Interviews in their current format with the support from the School Board. If you wish to make a telephone interview with your child’s teacher please arrange a time with them that is mutually convenient via ClassDojo or their email address as noted under ‘Contacts’ on the School Stream app.

All parents are reminded to practice ‘social distancing’ while on school grounds. We are asking parents/carers who are dropping off and collecting their children from school to not enter the classroom and remain outside so we limit the amount of people in a confined space. Please say goodbye to your child at the module entrance at the beginning of the day and wait outside the modules at the end of the day until your child exits. This does not apply to Preschool as parents need to sign their child in and out.

Playgroup

On Wednesday 8-10am playgroup has been held in the Preschool. Playgroup sessions will be cancelled until further notice.

Prevention at School

Leanyer School is implementing the following to support students and families.

  • Visitors to the school are being asked to postpone their work in school and contact families directly if it is regarding a student’s therapy programs.
  • Social distancing is encouraged: students are instructed on the importance of keeping personal space and respecting others’ space.
  • Students instructed in hygiene practices.
  • Students who display flu like symptoms are sent home immediately.
  • Common areas are being cleaned with disinfectant.
  • Staff encouraged to stay home when ill.
  • Families are encouraged to drop off and pick their children up from school.
  • Students and teachers are encouraged to participate in activities that do not involve physical contact.
  • All educators are encouraged to maintain social distancing outside of school.
  • Families are being encouraged, on an individual basis, to consider their family needs and information from the government regarding social distancing. They are being asked to let the school know asap if they decide to keep their children home

Current Contact Details

It is important that we have your most up to date contact information in case we need to contact you in the near future. If you haven’t done so already, please update your details via the Change of Details form by clicking here.

We are receiving regular and ongoing advice from the Australian Government and the NT Health Officer in regards to Coronavirus and making the necessary preparations in line with the advice that we are receiving. Our primary focus is ensuring that we continue to provide education in a safe environment this includes an increased focus on practising good hygiene in our school and also supporting students who may be feeling anxious about the current situation.

If you have any questions or concerns please get in touch with the School.

Yours sincerely

Leah Crockford

Principal                                                                                     

24 march 2020

School Coronavirus Update

Monday 16/03/2020

CORONAVIRUS–COVID-19

Dear Parents and Families

Leanyer School supports and follows all advice from NTG Departments. School events are cancelled until further notice. These include:

  1. Harmony Day Breakfast (Students are encouraged to wear orange and/or national dress on the day – this Friday 20 March 2020)
  2. Water Fun Day; and
  3. School Assemblies

Parent/Teacher interviews will continue as planned. These will be held Tuesday 31 March and Wednesday 1 April 2020.

Leanyer School provides soap and paper towels. Additional measures to increase safe practices have been implemented.

Families are welcome to provide their child with hand sanitiser or equivalent. Further information can be found on the:

Australian Government Department of Health website: https://www.health.gov.au/health- topics/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov

You can also contact the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

This is an evolving situation and positions and advice are changing rapidly, but we want you to know that caring for our students is paramount.

Yours sincerely

Leah Crockford
Principal

16 March 2020


Tips for Practising Good Hygiene

  • use a tissue or your elbow to block a cough or a sneeze, keep your hands clean and avoid touching your face
  • if you are unwell, contact your General Practitioner who will assess if you need to be tested for COVID-19 infection and arrange for to you to be tested – call ahead first as there may be protocols in place to prevent the spread of the virus
  • maintain at least one metre between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing

Talking Children about Coronavirus

If a child brings up Coronavirus or asks questions, it is important to acknowledge how they may be feeling and to answer questions as honestly as possible. This will help them feel informed and understand what is happening.

It is important to emphasise that even though there is one confirmed case of the virus in the Northern Territory. Also, it is important students understand the low risk of serious illness.

1.      Be aware of your own behaviour

It’s important that adults understand the effect their own behaviour can have on children. If you’re visibly upset or react in a way that suggests you’re fearful, children will take their cues from you.

2.      Stick to the facts

Ensure you stick to the facts. This will help keep conversations calm, considered, and constructive. Sharing factual information should help reassure children that there is no immediate risk to themselves, their friends, or their family.

3.      Explain what efforts are being made to contain the virus

Authorities are responding quickly. Travel in and out of the affected areas has been restricted, and scientists are working to develop a vaccine.

4.      Offer practical advice

For the time being the easiest way to reduce the risk of being affected by viruses of any sort (including the common cold) is to practice good hygiene.

These are easy habits for children to adopt, and should help them feel as though they’re able to exert some control over their circumstances.

Resources to Support Your Discussion with Children and Students

https://headspace.org.au/young-people/how-to-cope-with-stress-related-to-covid-19/ https://schools.au.reachout.com/natural-disasters/dealing-with-bad-world-news

https://emergingminds.com.au/ – If you scroll down about half way there is a video for parents intended to upskill them in how to talk to their child about the pandemic.

Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY), see two resources below

How to talk to your children about coronavirus – ABC

 Worried about your child getting coronavirus? Here’s what you need to know – The Conversation

Update 5pm Sunday 16/03/2020

Dear Families

Please find information below from the Department of Education released on Sunday.

Tips for Families

Tips for Practising Good Hygiene

  • use a tissue or your elbow to block a cough or a sneeze, keep your hands clean and avoid touching your face
  • if you are unwell, contact your General Practitioner who will assess if you need to be tested for COVID-19 infection and arrange for to you to be tested – call ahead first as there may be protocols in place to prevent the spread of the virus
  • maintain at least one metre between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing

Talking to Children about Coronovirus

If a child brings up Coronavirus or asks questions, it is important to acknowledge how they may be feeling and to answer questions as honestly as possible. This will help them feel informed and understand what is happening.

It is important to emphasise that even though there is one confirmed case of the virus in the Northern Territory.  Also, it is important students understand the low risk of serious illness.  

  1. Be aware of your own behaviour

It’s important that adults understand the effect their own behaviour can have on children. If you’re visibly upset or react in a way that suggests you’re fearful, children will take their cues from you.

  1. Stick to the facts

Ensure you stick to the facts. This will help keep conversations calm, considered, and constructive.

Sharing factual information should help reassure children that there is no immediate risk to themselves, their friends, or their family.

  1. Explain what efforts are being made to contain the virus

Authorities are responding quickly. Travel in and out of the affected areas has been restricted, and scientists are working to develop a vaccine.  

  1. Offer practical advice

For the time being the easiest way to reduce the risk of being affected by viruses of any sort (including the common cold) is to practice good hygiene. 

These are easy habits for children to adopt, and should help them feel as though they’re able to exert some control over their circumstances.

Resources to Support your Discussion with Children and Students

https://headspace.org.au/young-people/how-to-cope-with-stress-related-to-covid-19/ https://schools.au.reachout.com/natural-disasters/dealing-with-bad-world-news

https://emergingminds.com.au/  – If you scroll down about half way there is a video for parents intended to upskill them in how to talk to their child about the pandemic. 

Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY), see two resources below

How to talk to your children about coronavirus – ABC
Worried about your child getting coronavirus? Here’s what you need to know – The Conversation

Update 5pm Friday 13/03/2020

Leanyer School is committed to working with Department of Education to support our students and families. The latest information provided yesterday evening (13 March) by the Department of Education on self-isolation and mass gatherings regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19) is:

Self-isolation advice

If you are in doubt, remember to go back to the consistent advice that continues to come from the health authorities.

  • People who are not sick are urged not to seek COVID-19 testing.
  • If you are sick with symptoms and meet the criteria i.e. you have travelled overseas in the last 14 days or have had close contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19, then you will be tested.
  • If you are sick but do not meet the criteria – you will not be tested.
  • More broadly, if you are sick, please don’t attend work or school.
  • For the latest information for to the Australian Government Department of Health website: https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov
  • You can also contact the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

Mass Gatherings

Yesterday the Chief Minister for the Northern Territory publicly advised that:

“While the spread of the virus continues to be low, Australia’s Chief Health and Medical Officers have recommended that, from Monday, governments advise against organised, non-essential gatherings of 500 or more people. 

This does not include essential gatherings such as going to school, university, work, public transport or airports.”

Overarching Message

Please find a link below to a video message from Professor Di Stephens, the Deputy Health Officer for the Northern Territory Department of Health.

Click here to access video message from Professor Di Stephens to distribute with staff and families.

This is sensible advice that is coming from a health expert.

Next Steps

The Department of Education is developing a pandemic planning template for schools and divisions to complete that aligns with the whole of government pandemic plan.

We are anticipating that the plans will be finalised and provided to schools and division heads in week commencing 23 March 2020. 

Leanyer School will continue to keep you informed. If, in the meantime, you have any questions or comments, please contact the School.

Update 1.45pm Thursday 05/03/2020

Dear Parents and Families

Please be assured that Leanyer School is keeping up-to-date with local authorities and the NT Department of Education around Coronavirus (COVID-19)

It is important to reiterate that COVID-19 is largely a mild infection like the common cold, and taking simple precautions to avoid catching or spreading a cold are the same you’d take for this infection.  It is of most concern for the elderly and/or people who are already unwell from another illness.

Below is a summary of main points for you to be aware of at this point in time. Updates on information will be emailed to you as they come to hand.

Maintaining good hygiene practices

  • In line with normal school practice, we are ensuring that students and staff have access to handwashing facilities and that these are adequately stocked at all times.
  • Ensure that students and staff are practicing good hygiene including using a tissue to cough or sneeze, keeping hands clean, washed and sanitised, and that they are avoiding touching their face or mouth.
  • Avoid kissing or shaking hands when greeting someone.

Travel advice for students and staff

The following countries are considered to be at a higher risk for COVID-19:

  • Mainland China
  • Iran
  • Italy
  • South Korea

All students and staff returning from these countries are required to monitor their health and self-isolate for 14 days from the date of their arrival into the Northern Territory.

General advice for all

If you are experiencing fever, sweats or chills, or other flu-like symptoms (Know the signs) please see your doctor.

For the latest information for to the Australian Government Department of Health website: https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov

You can also contact the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

Update 6.30pm Friday 20/02/2020

As you may be aware, it was announced today that two people who arrived into Darwin this week from the Diamond Princess Cruise Ship have tested positive for COVID-19.

The below update that has been provided to us from the Northern Territory Department of Health:

As you may be aware the NT have hosted an additional 209 Australians who’ve been stranded on the Diamond Princess in Japan to the Manigurr-ma village in Howard Springs.

Since their arrival in Australia, two of the people on this flight have tested positive for COVID-19.

These patients are doing well and have been placed in medical isolation in the care of the AUSMAT team on site.

It is important to reassure you that these patients pose no threat to your community, or to the other people currently in quarantine. The virus is transmitted by close contact with an infected person through means such as coughing or sneezing. It does not spread any distance through the air.

The two patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 were medically evacuated to their home states for treatment. I want to reassure you that this evacuation also did not pose a risk to the health of anyone in the community.

Strict infection control protocols remain in place. The other people quarantined in the facility will stay within agreed limits of the perimeter of the property throughout their 14-day isolation period and will be also housed away from the perimeter fences. Security staff will continue to monitor the facility 24 hours a day.

For the latest national updates please visit health.gov.au

You can also contact the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

Kind regards

Leanne Nixon
Acting Chief Executive
Department of Education
Northern Territory Government

14th Floor, Mitchell Centre, 55-59 Mitchell Street, Darwin
GPO Box 4821, Darwin, NT 0801
w: www.education.nt.gov.au

Update 2:30pm Tuesday 19/02/2019

As you may be aware the NT will host an additional 209 Australians who’ve been stranded on the Diamond Princess in Japan to the Manigurr-ma village in Howard Springs.

The below update is to be provided to students, families and staff:

All people who are coming are healthy and have no symptoms of COVID19 – they have already been in quarantine on board the ship and have not contracted the virus.

NT Health and the National Critical Care and Trauma Response Centre (NCCTRC) are preparing the village to accommodate the people and will follow procedures similar to the previous evacuation from Wuhan. They will travel with an AUSMAT team, and will undergo multiple screenings during the evacuation process. They will be screened daily while in quarantine in Howard Springs in the same way the current evacuees are being monitored.

Their plane is expected to arrive on Wednesday 19 February into the RAAF Base Darwin side of the Darwin Airport and be met by Australian Border force, AUSMAT and the Australian Defence Force.

Anyone who is unwell upon arrival will go directly to hospital for further assessment and treatment.  All staff interacting with these people will be wearing appropriate protective equipment and will avoid any direct contact. The new evacuees will be quarantined separately from those who were evacuated from Wuhan.

The new evacuees have been in quarantine for more than a week already and the Australian Government is taking a very cautious approach by quarantining these people for an additional 14 days.

There is enough space at the facility to ensure the two groups do not mix. The Manigurr-ma village is equipped to quarantine these additional people.

They will be under the care of AUSMAT while in quarantine and will not be allowed to leave the village.

For the latest national updates please visit health.gov.au

You can also contact the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

Kind regards

Leanne Nixon

Acting Chief Executive
Department of Education
Northern Territory Government
14th Floor, Mitchell Centre, 55-59 Mitchell Street, Darwin
GPO Box 4821, Darwin, NT 0801

Update 5:30pm Friday 07/02/2020

This afternoon it has been confirmed by the Australian Government that the NT will host approximately 280 Australians who are being evacuated from China.

The Australian Government has selected the Manigurr-ma accommodation village at Howard Springs because the quarantine accommodation on Christmas Island is at capacity.

The attached fact sheet and below update are to be provided to students, families and staff:

The people who are coming are healthy and have no symptoms but will go into the village for the required 14-day quarantine period as a precautionary measure. 

They have been tested by Australian health officials in China and will be monitored throughout their journey to Australia on the flight and checked again when they arrive.

Their plane will arrive tomorrow, 8 February into RAAF Base Darwin side of the Darwin Airport and be met by Australian Border force, AUSMAT and the Australian Defence Force.

Anyone who is unwell upon arrival will go directly to hospital for further assessment and treatment.  All staff interacting with these people will be wearing appropriate protective equipment and will avoid any direct contact.

While at the village these people will be subject to strict medical screening throughout their stay and will not be permitted to leave the site during their quarantine period; they will not be mixing in the community and there is no risk to the public.

The food, laundry, recreational facilities and daily operations at the village will all be managed by the Australian Government personnel.

The virus is spread only through close contact – not through mosquito bites and not through the air. That means any neighbouring residences will not be affected. 

For the latest national updates please visit health.gov.au

You can also contact the National Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080.

I acknowledge that some schools and early childhood service providers are fielding enquiries around the Coronavirus situation. I ask you to remain calm and calculated in your response ensuring that you provide the facts and advice that is being issued from the Australian Government which is coming from a team of expert health practitioners.

It is important to highlight that there are no confirmed cases of Coronavirus in the Northern Territory.

Further advice

Please see the latest updates through on the Australian Government of Health website –   https://www.health.gov.au/resources/collections/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-resources or contact the Australian Coronavirus Information Line 1800 020 080.

Kind regards,

Vicki Baylis
Chief Executive
Department of Education
Northern Territory Government

Update 1:30pm Monday 03/02/2020

Please find attached updated fact sheet (Version 4) for families.

The main difference in the fact sheet is that further clarity has been provided around who can and who can not attend schools and early childhood centres has been provided – see excerpt from attached fact sheets below.

Can my child attend School or Early Childhood Centres?

In the following scenarios your child can not attend school or early childhood centres:

  • If your child has travelled from Hubei Province within the past 14 days, you must isolate yourself and child until 14 days have elapsed after leaving Hubei Province.
  • If your child has left, or transited through, mainland China on or after 1 February 2020 you must isolate yourself and child until 14 days after leaving China.
  • If your child has been in close contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus, you and your child must isolate yourself for 14 days after last contact with the confirmed case.

In the following scenarios your child can attend your school or early childhood centres:

  • Students who have travelled from other provinces of mainland China (and have not been in Hubei province) who arrived prior to 1 February 2020.
  • Students who have only been to Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan.

By way of example,

  • if someone left the city of Wuhan in Hubei Province on 22 January 2020 he/she is required to isolate until 6 February 2020.
  • if someone left Shanghai on 28 January 2020 and comes to Australia via another country on 3 February 2020, he/she would not be required to isolate (as he/she left China before 1 February 2020).
  • If someone left Beijing on 3 February 2020 and arrived in Australia the same day, he/she would be required to isolate for 14 days, until 17 February 2020.

If you or your child develop symptoms (listed below) within 14 days of leaving anywhere in mainland China or within 14 days of last contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus, you should arrange to see your usual doctor for urgent assessment. You should telephone the health clinic or hospital before you arrive and tell them of your travel history or that you have been in contact with a confirmed case of novel coronavirus. Your doctor will liaise with Public Health authorities to manage your care. You must then remain isolated either in your home or a healthcare setting until Public Health authorities inform you that it is safe for you to return to your usual activities.

Further advice

Further information is available at https://www.health.gov.au/resources/collections/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov-resources or Australian Coronavirus Information Line 1800 020 080.

You can also download a general information fact sheet which is in simplified Chinese to further support students and families.

Update 3.30pm Sunday 02/02/2020

Attached is the latest information from the Australian Government Department of Health in regards to the Coronavirus for parents.

Update 4pm Saturday 01/02/2020

The latest update on the Coronavirus situation is below:

  • There are no confirmed cases of novel Coronavirus in the NT.
  • Three suspected cases in the Northern Territory have been tested, and on Saturday afternoon (1 February) returned negative results.

Current advice from Australian Health Protection Principal Committee

  • On Saturday 1 February, the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) upgraded its novel Coronavirus advice.
  • All travellers who have been to any part of mainland China within the last 14 days are advised to self-isolate (stay at home) until the 14 day-mark is reached (ie, if you returned a week ago, isolate yourself for a week).
  • Ring the Australian Coronavirus Information Line on 1800 020 080 for advice.

NT-specific advice – provided from Northern Territory Department of Health

  • If you develop flu-like symptoms while you are self-isolated, contact the Top End Health Service Public Health Unit on 8922 8044.
  • If your symptoms develop you should contact the Emergency Department 8922 8888 who will make arrangements for your transport.
  • If you become very unwell and are experiencing distress, contact 000 for an ambulance.
  • It is very important that you provide your travel history as a priority when seeking any medical advice or attention.
  • Residents and visitors are advised to remain alert, but not alarmed. The novel Coronavirus has a low infection rate of 1.9. This compares with rates of 10 for influenza and 13 for measles.
  • There is no need for members of the public to use masks, unless they have had contact with a confirmed case.

Updates are being posted on the SecureNT Facebook page and we will continue to provide you with updates as they come to hand.

Update 3pm Friday 31/01/2020

Dear Parents/Families

Re: Coronavirus

The Australian Government Department of Health has issued advice that all travellers who have recently returned from Hubei province in China, or who have had contact with someone who has a suspected or confirmed case of the Coronavirus, must stay isolated at home for 14 days, other than for seeking individual medical advice.

If you or your child/ren have returned from other parts of China, which is considered low risk, they may attend school and should not be excluded.
Please be assured this continues to be a precautionary measure and the Department of Education is continuing to receive advice from the Federal Government and the team of qualified health practitioners who are managing this situation.

If you or your child/ren are experiencing fever, sweats or chills, or other flu-like symptoms, please see your doctor. Additionally, if you or your child/ren have recently returned from Hubei province in China, please advise me on 8927 4022.

For the latest information: https://www.health.gov.au/health-topics/novel-coronavirus-2019-ncov

Yours sincerely


Leah Crockford
Principal
31 January 2020

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