The NSW government announced today that close contacts with COVID-positive people in schools no longer need to isolate from next Monday, November 29th.
Here’s everything you need to know about the new rules.
What are the new changes for the schools?
From November 29, students who are close contacts in a positive COVID-19 case should get a PCR COVID test as soon as they find out they are a close contact.
If the test is negative, the student can go back to school.
For seven days thereafter, however, the student must give negative results from Rapid Antigen tests taken at home.
Restrictions on music have also been lifted with instruments that rely on breathing and singing that have been allowed to continue outdoors.
When do the changes begin?
The changes will take effect on Monday, November 29th.
What you can and cannot do
If your child is told that they are a close contact, they should go and get a PCR test.
If it comes back as negative, they can return to school on the basis that they take a quick antigen test for the next seven days.
All Rapid Antigen tests should also be negative.
If your child returns a positive PCR test, it means they have COVID-19.
If so, they will have to stay home from school and isolate themselves.
What to do if you are a close contact
If you are a close contact at school, just have a negative PCR test now and then you can return to the classroom.
Should I isolate myself if I am a close contact?
While waiting for your PCR test, you will need to isolate, but if it comes back negative, you can return to school.
It is important to note that these are the new rules for schools and the rules for close contact in other environments are different.
Do I still have to wear a face mask at school?
The mask settings remain the same.
All staff and high school students must wear masks.
Masks are also recommended for elementary school students.
Should schools close for deep cleaning?
Schools should no longer close for deep cleaning as long as the cleaning procedures at the school are adequate.
Schools also no longer have to close during contact tracing.
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The only reason a school should close is if there are multiple COVID-19 cases and it becomes a cluster.