COVID-safe HSC advice for students

This information will help you understand the COVID-safe arrangements in place when attending your school to prepare for the HSC examinations. Your safety and wellbeing is of paramount importance to us – as well as those of our staff in attendance. We ask that you cooperate with these arrangements at all times.

Last updated 2 October 2021

Attending school to prepare for your HSC exam

If you go to school in an area where stay-at-home rules apply, you will be able to attend school for the following reasons:

  • revision and wellbeing support

  • participating in individual or small group face-to-face sessions with your teachers
  • studying with peers in your study bubble.

A study bubble:

  • is a group of no more than 5 students from within the same daily scheduled groupings or study sessions You should not mingle or move between groups during the day

  • occurs outdoors or in a well-ventilated indoor open space such as a hall or library

  • is not related to the Government's buddy bubble for those under 18 years old

  • can change from day to day.

You should not mingle or move between groups during the day.

If you go to school in an area where there are no stay-at-home rules in place, you can continue to attend school while following COVID-safe practices.

HSC exam day – what you need to know

Screening for students with symptoms

  • You must not attend the exam if you or a member of your family are unwell.

  • You will be asked upon arrival if you have any flu-like symptoms or if you should be in self-isolation under direction by NSW Health.

  • If you are displaying flu-like symptoms or if you advise that you are unwell, you will be asked to leave the school and arrange to have a COVID-19 test.

  • If you have a clinical history or known illness that may appear like COVID-19 symptoms, you should plan now and speak to your doctor or GP. The GP can provide written assurance that you present with those symptoms on a normal basis.

  • If you present with a negative COVID-19 test result, you may participate in the exam unless you have been asked by NSW Health to self-isolate.

Flu-like symptoms

Flu-like symptoms include fever, cough, sore or scratchy throat, chills, headache, shortness of breath, loss of taste, and loss of smell. For additional information about COVID-19 symptoms, refer to the NSW Health website.

If you are displaying even mild flu-like symptoms, you should leave immediately and not return until you are symptom-free and have a negative COVID-19 test result.

If someone in your household has any flu-like symptoms or if they have visited a venue of concern, you should leave immediately and not return until you are symptom-free and have a negative COVID-19 test result.

Minimising the risk of transmission

  • Wash your hands or use hand sanitiser before starting the exam.
  • You must wear a mask during your exam and when at the exam site.

  • You may not borrow or share equipment such as pens, pencils or calculators.

  • Maintain good personal hygiene practices during the exam including covering your cough or sneeze with your elbow or a tissue, and disposing of tissues at the end of the exam.

  • Avoid shaking hands or hugging other students on exam days.

  • Hygiene supplies will be available at all exam venues including hand sanitiser and wipes.

  • You will need to wipe down your chair after your exam.

  • You should not mingle before or after your exam. If you leave the exam early, you must leave the school immediately.

  • Exam rooms will be cleaned each day.

Arrival and sign-in arrangements

  • Arrive at the time designated by your school before your exam and report directly to the designated exam room for screening and sign-in.

  • Do not mingle before and after the exam.

  • You will be asked to sign an attendance sheet confirming your attendance at the exam and that you do not have flu-like symptoms, as well as provide your contact details.

Alternative examination locations

Your school has identified an alternative exam location in the event that the examination is unable to proceed in the planned location. This information will be provided to you on your personal examination timetable so it is readily available in case it is required at short notice.

This is a backup only. Attend the planned location unless advised by the school. Do not attend a proposed alternative location if you have not been told to do so by the school.

Confirmed cases of COVID-19

If the school is advised by NSW Health that there has been a confirmed case of COVID-19 which will affect the school, arrangements are in place to minimise disruption where possible.

The school may advise you the day before that the examination will be relocated to the alternative venue detailed in your timetable, or the exam may be cancelled.

Illness or misadventure

If you are not able to attend an exam due to having COVID-19 symptoms, or you are turned away as a result of screening, you will be eligible for an illness and misadventure claim. Your school will assist you through this process where required.

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