Vaccination requirements for school sites

Anyone working on a NSW school or early education and care site must be fully vaccinated to help protect the health and safety of staff and students.

Updated 4 pm 7 January 2022

School staff can access more information on Vaccinations general information (staff only).

Vaccination requirements

The NSW Government announced on Friday 7 January 2022 that boosters will become part of the vaccination requirement for any workforce where mandatory vaccinations are required as part of the Public Health Orders. Further information will be provided as it becomes available.

On 15 December, NSW Health Minister Brad Hazzard signed the Public Health (COVID-19 Vaccination of Education and Care Workers) Order (no. 2) (PDF 1,192KB) which will commence from 17 December for a period of 3 months. This effectively continues the existing Public Health Order requiring mandatory vaccination for education and care workers. Relevant work includes:

  • any work undertaken at a government school or non-government school (this includes work by teachers, support staff, corporate employees, contractors, volunteers and students on student placement)

  • any work at an early education and care facility (this includes work by employees, contractors, volunteers and students on student placement). This covers centre-based child care facilities, family day care and school-based child care (after-school or vacation care)

  • providing disability support services to a child with a disability at a school or early education and care facility where the person is required to hold a WWCC. This includes disability support services provided under the Assisted School Travel Program, even where part of the service occurs away from school sites

  • NESA authorised officers undertaking activities in relation to home schooling

  • NESA staff working at HSC exam sites.

Work includes:

  • work done under a contract of service or a contract for service

  • work done as a volunteer or for a charitable organisation

  • work done by a student on student placement

  • work done temporarily, including while acting in or filling an office or other role because of a vacancy or absence.

Vaccination requirements do not apply to an education or care worker who carries out relevant work in an emergency. For example, an emergency includes paramedics responding to a medical emergency, firefighters responding to a fire or gas leak, and workers responding to a sewerage leak.

Proving vaccination status

When attending a school or early education and care site, you will need to attest that you are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. You will then be asked by a responsible person (such as the principal) to show evidence of vaccination.

Evidence of vaccination includes:

You will not be allowed onto a school or early education and care site without showing evidence of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Vaccinations for visitors and volunteers

Visitors – such as volunteers, allied health partners and other external providers, and parents and carers allowed on site are required to be fully vaccinated. Additionally, visitors delivering specialist services or services essential to school operations and external providers delivering educational services must have a COVID-19 safety plan in place.

Where a visitor has a medical contraindication, the following process is to be followed:

  • Visitors will need to provide a medical contraindication form to the school prior to the visit. The contraindication form must be one of the following used by medical practitioners in NSW:
  • The school is required to conduct a risk assessment prior to the visitor attending the school site. The risk assessment will consider the risk of transmission of COVID-19 and identify measures that need to be put in place to minimise risks to health and safety. Only approved medical contraindication forms will be accepted.

Note. visitors with medical contraindication are not permitted to be in direct contact with students who may be particularly vulnerable to the health impacts of COVID-19. This is particularly relevant to our SSPs, schools with support units and pre-schools where people with valid medical contraindications are not permitted to work in direct contact with students.

For all other settings, the risk assessment is used to determine the particular measures required to support COVID safe activities.

  • A temporary contraindication certificate is only relevant up to the date specified on the contraindication form. After which the person must be fully vaccinated.
  • At all times whilst on the school site, all visitors must adhere to public health requirements, particularly those relating to health, hygiene, and distancing requirements

Student vaccinations

Vaccinations are not mandatory for students. However, anyone eligible (currently anyone aged 12 and over) is encouraged to get vaccinated.

If a vaccination program is implemented for students in NSW public schools, informed consent will be sought from the child’s parents or carers before any vaccine is administered.

For information about vaccine consent for parents and guardians, refer to NSW Health’s Consent for COVID-19 vaccination factsheet (PDF 196 KB).

Get your COVID-19 vaccination

Learn more about COVID-19 vaccination in NSW, including booking an appointment and vaccine safety.

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