15 Mar 2020
The NSW Department of Education is introducing proactive measures to limit the impact of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in our schools.
Mark Scott, Secretary of the Department of Education, today announced that schools would adopt social distancing measures requiring them to cancel assemblies, excursions, travel, some events and conferences.
Mr Scott said these measures are precautionary and designed to reduce exposure via non-essential gatherings.
"Schools have been a focus of the community and the government as the impacts of coronavirus have developed globally," Mr Scott said.
"From Monday onwards, I expect school assemblies and substantial gatherings to be cancelled, along with all excursions.
"The community expects schools to be as safe as possible. We are implementing these measures to provide peace of mind for students, parents and staff."
"These cancellations also extend to inter-school arts, sports, initiative activities and events.
All major arts, sports and initiative activities and events will temporarily be ceased until further notice. This includes whole-school sporting events and inter-school events involving three or more schools.
"Local inter-school sport and other activities can proceed, but we ask organisers to ensure that as far as possible, reasonable precautions are taken," Mr Scott said.
"I trust our principals and staff to show leadership during this time."
Schools will be provided with more detailed advice and suggestions on how they can adjust their day to day activities with minimal disruption.
The department is continuing to prepare for further closures if necessary with scaling up of technology, additional training of staff and preparation of offsite lessons.
Families and students in self-isolation can find useful information to continue learning from home.
For the latest information, check COVID-19 advice for schools.