Advice for families

Restrictions on certain activities apply to schools throughout NSW.

Last updated at 12.40pm 28 July 2021

Updated advice for families

Last updated 11.40am 28 July 2021

NSW has updated health advice that comes into effect for Greater Sydney (including the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour) from 11.59pm Saturday 17 July.

Parents and carers in Greater Sydney must keep children – across primary and secondary school – at home unless they need to be at school. Schools (including outside of school hours care) are open for any child that needs it.

Early childhood education and care services – including family day care residences and venues – in Greater Sydney may continue to operate.

Parents and carers in the Blacktown, Campbelltown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield, Georges River, Liverpool and Parramatta LGAs are strongly encouraged to keep their children at home if they are able to do so, in order to limit movement in the community.

The stay-at-home order has been extended for Greater Sydney until 28 August 2021. This will mean 2 separate guidelines for schools depending on their location.

The guidelines are separated as those for:

For specific advice on early childhood education, refer to COVID-19 and early childhood education and care.

All families are encouraged to discuss the changes with their schools if needed.

All families are encouraged to monitor the NSW Government’s latest COVID-19 news and updates for locations where there may have been exposure to COVID-19 and adhere to the advice as appropriate.

NSW Health regularly updates its advice.

We will provide additional updates as the current situation evolves.

HSC exam advice

Updated 1.30pm 21 July 2021

NESA has announced a number of changes to the 2021 HSC timetables.

The department will provide more advice shortly to support schools in conducting COVID-safe examinations.

For more information, refer to HSC exam advice.

Travelling between Greater Sydney and regional NSW

Last updated 11.40am 28 July 2021

Under the new Public Health Order, if you live in the Blacktown, Canterbury-Bankstown, Cumberland, Fairfield and Liverpool (with the inclusion of Campbelltown, Georges River and Parramatta from midnight 28 July 2021) local government areas you cannot leave the local government area that you live in to go to work or school unless you are an authorised worker or your child needs to attend school because they cannot be cared for or educated at home.

From Monday 19 July, all public transport services within Greater Sydney (including the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour areas) will run to a reduced timetable. School services may be impacted. For further information to help you plan transportation refer to Transport NSW COVID-19 safer travel guidance.

If you live in regional and rural areas, you must not enter Greater Sydney including the Blue Mountains, Central Coast, Wollongong and Shellharbour local government areas unless you have a reasonable excuse.

Facilitating attendance at school (where the student cannot learn from home) or to attend early childhood education is a reasonable excuse to enter Greater Sydney under the Public Health Order.

Facilitating arrangements for access to, and contact between parents and children or siblings is also a reasonable excuse to enter Greater Sydney under the Public Health Order.

If you enter these areas for any reason, stay at home rules will also apply to you for 14 days after you were last in any of these areas.

This means that you will need to stay at your place of residence for 14 days, even if it is in a regional area, unless you have a reasonable excuse. Attending school or early childhood education is a reasonable excuse.

At all times, please continue to:

  • closely monitor for symptoms for COVID-19 and immediately get tested should you have the mildest of symptoms, regardless of where you live or attend school. If you get tested for COVID-19 because you have symptoms or if you have been directed by NSW Health to do so, you must isolate at home until receiving your test result

  • refer to the NSW Government list of case locations and act on the guidance from NSW Health if you have been to any of these venues.

Travel between state and territory borders

Updated 10:00pm 20 July 2021

Students and staff in border communities can continue to attend NSW schools at this time, except for the following reasons:

  • They must remain at home if they are unwell, even with the mildest of symptoms. If they are unwell they must receive a negative COVID test and be symptom-free before returning to school.
  • If they have been to a venue of concern they must comply with the self-isolation and testing requirements as directed by the relevant Health Department.

All students and staff that cannot attend school or work due to interstate border disruptions will be supported to learn and work from home.

There may be some disruption for students and staff crossing interstate borders if they have been to a ‘hotspot’ in NSW.

Students and staff from ACT

In particular, students and staff who live in the ACT who have recently visited Greater Sydney should visit the ACT websiteExternal link for further information.

Students and staff from Victoria

The border bubble remains in effect between NSW and Victoria.

To cross the border without a permit, cross-border staff and students just need to carry proof of address (such as a driver’s licence). There is no change for staff or students who live in border communities.

Staff and students who are Victorian residents in the border bubble impacted by the Victorian lockdown which commenced at 11.59pm 15 July 2021 are permitted to continue to attend NSW schools for work and education.

However, Victoria is pausing all red zone permits from 11.59pm 20 July 2021. This may cause some disruption to staff and students who have been or need to travel to a red zone. All students and staff that cannot attend NSW schools for work and education due to interstate border disruptions will be supported to learn and work from home.

Students and staff who live in or around the NSW/Victoria border should seek further advice through the NSW and Victorian Government COVID-19 websites.

Students and staff from Queensland

A New South Wales border zone will come into effect from 1am Friday 23 July 2021.

Staff and students who are Queensland residents can continue to attend NSW schools in the border zone for work and education.

Queensland residents coming to NSW, including staff and students, will still need to complete the NSW declaration for entry form from Queensland every 72 hours. They will also need to complete a declaration form for NSW to re-enter Queensland from NSW. All staff and students will need to make sure they have all paperwork in order.

It is important to note that New South Wales border zone residents and Queensland residents cannot travel south outside the border zone in New South Wales and then enter Queensland until it has been 14 days since they were south of the border zone.

All students and staff that cannot attend NSW schools for work and education due to interstate border disruptions will be supported to learn and work from home.

Students and staff who live in or around the NSW–Queensland border should seek further advice through the NSW interstate travellers and Queensland Government COVID-19 website.

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