COVID-19 - 16 March 2020

16 Mar 2020

Following the announcement of our Prime Minister today, and in light of the recommendations of the Chief Medical Officer, as of Monday, 16 March, we will increase our precautionary measures in relation to COVID-19. We will continue to act on advice from NSW Health and other government authorities, responding in a proactive and appropriate manner with the health and safety of our School community at the heart of our decisions. 

We have no confirmed cases of COVID-19 at NGS currently. One Year 6 teacher has come into contact with a confirmed case and is in self isolation and the School is following advice of NSW Health in this matter. The teacher is currently asymptomatic. We will act on the advice of NSW Health as we become aware of any staff member or student who comes into contact with the virus.  

The advice for schools continues to be that it is safe to continue operations, with increased hygiene and social distancing interventions implemented to slow the spread of the virus and reduce the risk of infection to students, staff and the community. Furthermore, medical evidence continues to say that the risk of serious illness to children under 10 is very low. Over 10 there is an increased risk, however parents should not be overly alarmed. By far the greatest risk is to people over the age of 60 with a further risk for those over 80 years. We need to take precautions in schools to ensure our efforts help the most vulnerable in our society. This is consistent with our School’s values. 

Our COVID-19 Response Team and the Executive have been meeting regularly to review the situation and put in place plans to respond to the rapidly evolving situation. We wanted to update you on these interventions after our meeting today:

Hygiene and Social Distancing Measures:

  • All students presenting with cold or flu-like symptoms are to remain at home until the symptoms clear. If your child develops a fever, please seek medical advice before returning to School. 
  • Any student who comes to NGS with these symptoms will be required to go home.
  • Increased hygiene and social distancing interventions will be implemented. This includes:
    • Hand sanitisation upon entry to the School
    • Explicit instruction on correct hand washing procedure, including gamification of this procedure 
    • Promotion of personal hygiene strategies
    • Increased cleaning of classrooms and bathrooms with medical strength disinfectant 
    • Reduced interactions between students from different year groups
    • Alternate arrangements for large gatherings such as Chapel and Assembly
    • All internal and external events are being reviewed every 24 hours.

Teaching and Learning

Lessons will continue as normal.

We acknowledge and respect that some parents will make the decision to keep their children home at this time. Work will be provided for students who are absent during this time through our online learning platform – SchoolBox. 


The Learning Centre and Homework Club – Hill Campus

  • Students are encouraged to go home immediately after school to study
  • Students who are in the Library or at Homework Club after school will be required to implement the appropriate hygiene and social distancing measures
  • The Senior Study Centre will continue for Year 11 and 12 students in the evenings for those who wish to remain at School.


  • Increased personal hygiene measures will be implemented
  • Appropriate engaging activities to assist with social distancing will be planned for students
  • Alternate processes for dismissal will be put in place

Excursions & School-Based Events

  • All excursions and incursions planned for Term 1 have been reviewed and considered safe to proceed, postponed or cancelled. 
  • Other school-based events are being reviewed. Parents and students will be notified of any changes to the School calendar. 
  • Overseas trips and exchanges are all on hold, postponed, or cancelled. Families who are impacted will be or have been contacted separately. 

Co-Curricular Activities 

  • Most co-curricular activities will continue. Any changes to this will be communicated to parents and students through SchoolBox. 

Sporting Events 

  • All inter-school competitions, including HRIS, AICES and CIS events have been postponed or cancelled.
  • The NGS Cross Country will continue as planned with additional risk mitigation measures in place. 

Future Plans

  • The School continues to work with staff to ensure we are well prepared to ensure the continuity of your child’s education in the event of a prolonged school closure or student absence. Advice for parents to support student success while learning online will be provided if this becomes necessary. 

Reducing the Spread of Infection

To help reduce the risk of infection within our School community, we ask for your support and assistance with the following:

  • Please keep your child home if he/she is showing any symptoms of a cold or influenza. Given we do have children at NGS with pre-existing medical conditions that may heighten their risk of infection, we ask that parents are extra-vigilant regarding this.
  • As there will be an increase in the use of outdoor spaces, please ensure your child has a sun-safe school hat.
  • If a member of your family has returned from overseas, please note as of today, they must self-isolate for 14 days. Please do not enter the School grounds if you have recently returned from overseas. 
  • If a member of your family has been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, please notify the School.
  • If you are planning an overseas holiday with your son or daughter in the coming weeks, please notify the School.

Please continue to direct questions, concerns or travel notifications to Mr. Daniel Wearne at for primary students or Mr. Alan Parsons at for secondary students. 

The School will continue to update you as is necessary.

We recognise the impact that this unprecedented situation is having on families. This can have a significant affect on the health and wellbeing of young people. We encourage you to have appropriate conversations with your children about the pandemic, but also to continue to engage them in other activities. The School offers professional counselling services for our students. Please contact Mr Wearne or Mr Parsons if you would like further information about this. It is important that we as adults model resilience and positive coping strategies at times like this, reassuring our children and young people that we can and will endure something of this magnitude, particularly if we draw on our strengths and come together as a supportive community.