COVID 19: Sydney school closes

COVID 19: Sydney school closes

St Christopher's Catholic Primary School in Panania has been closed after a visitor to the school was confirmed to have tested positive for COVID-19.

The school, located in Sydney’s south-west, hosted a professional development event on Thursday, 12 March at which one of the participants has since tested positive for the virus.

Sydney Catholic Schools’ executive director, Tony Farley, said the school will close for 24 hours as a precautionary measure.

"We have been liaising closely with NSW Health which advises the risk of staff or student exposure is minimal. That said, we want to take all possible precautions to ensure the continued health and safety of our school community,” he said.

"As a result, we have decided to close the school for one day to enable a thorough hygiene sweep. We have also asked those teachers who attended Thursday's event to get tested and self-isolate as a precaution”.

Earlier today, the Catholic Education Diocese of Parramatta announced that all school excursions would be cancelled until further notice.

The ban will also see all major arts and sports activities and events close, including whole school sporting events and inter‐school events. However, smaller, local inter‐school sport and other activities will be able proceed.

Some state education departments, meanwhile, have cancelled all public school assemblies, excursions and other events as a precautionary measure to stem the spread of the virus.

"Schools have been a focus of the community and the government as the impacts of coronavirus have developed globally," Mark Scott, NSW Department Secretary, said.

"From Monday onwards, I expect school assemblies and substantial gatherings to be cancelled, along with all excursions".

So far, the Federal Government is keeping Australian schools and universities open, saying that closing them would divert critical human resources such as doctors and nurses.