Term 4 Week 1 Monday 3rd October
Acknowledgement of Country
Our Prayer this Week
From the Principal
Welcome back! It's hard to believe that we have already made it to Term 4. I hope that everyone had a restful break.
There is certainly lots to look forward to this term with performances, camps, excursions and our artist in residence just part of the list of things happening in the coming months.
Please remember to keep referring to the important dates on the newsletter.
Artist in Residence
Next week, Emma Stenhouse, will be working with all the students and staff to design and create a piece of artwork to place in our foyer.
Emma is an indigenous artist who will be educating the children on the use of imagery in indigenous artwork and then helping to facilitate the design and creation of a painting that represents our school.
We are grateful to Acciona for contributing $3000 to fund this project.
Please have a look at Emma's work on her website https://emmastenhouse.com.au/
School Closure Week 3
Our last school closure for the year is Monday 17th October.
On this day staff will be working with Catholic Education Teaching and Learning Officer, Mel Willis, to build common understandings of spelling and related literacy skills.
This has been a major focus this year as part of our Annual Action Plan.
A reminder to parents and carers to please update any changes in your child's medical details via PAM. This allows us to keep your child safe at school and on excursions.
Some people may use the Simon Everywhere app. There has been a number of updates to this app, so please install these updates.
Hats are Back
Term 4 is hat term. Thanks to everyone who managed to find their hats for the first day of school. Hats must be worn when outside.
Key Dates for the Diary
7th October- Bell Shakespeare performance at Mortlake College
10th October- Emma Stenhouse, artist in residence for the week
17th October- School Closure Day- literacy PD
18th October- Junior Excursion to Halls Gap
2nd-4th November- Gr 5/6 Camp to Dunkeld
24th November- St Colman's Feast Day
5th and 6th December- Gr 3/4 Camp to Halls Gap
6th December- Global transition day (MRC and Mortlake College)
9th December- St Colman's Transition Day
16th December- Last day for students
Our Lady of Mercy Parish News
Free Autism Workshop
A few reminders:
* Masks are highly encouraged but not mandated. They are required on the bus.
* Positive cases must isolate for a minimum of 5 days and report these cases to school.
* Positive cases do not need to test again for 4 weeks.
* RATs are still available and are to be used when someone has Covid symptoms.
* Close contacts can attend school if they test negative on a RAT each school day. Close contacts must wear a mask indoors.
Rapid Antigen Tests.
The Victorian Government is continuing to provide Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs) in Term 3 and again in Term 4 to schools. Household contacts are required to test negative using a rapid antigen test on at least 5 out of 7 if they are attending or working at a school onsite.
Schools will be able to provide these RATs to parents/carers, staff or students on request, as the previous settings that required weekly or daily testing of students and staff have ceased.
Staff and students are only required to test for COVID when symptomatic or if they are a close contact of a confirmed case. Individuals who have tested positive are not required to test for 4 weeks (note this has been 12 weeks during last term). If you require RATs please contact the school.
We have been asked to remind staff, students and families that the current advice from the Victorian government is that it is recommended face masks are worn in indoor settings (except for close contacts, who must wear a mask indoors unless an exception applies). Everyone including students aged 8 years and above must wear a face mask when travelling on public transport, taxis or ride share vehicles.
COVID-19 reporting to the school community.
Principals must notify staff and the school community through a daily email (where applicable) when a student(s) or staff member(s) have returned a positive COVID-19 test result and had attended the school.
The following still apply:
Managing a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19
As soon as a staff member or student becomes aware of being a suspected case - that is symptomatic (fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, loss of smell or taste):
- The suspected case is required to leave the school site, or be isolated on-site until they are able to leave.
- The suspected case is required to be tested with a rapid antigen test (if at home). A positive test result must be reported to the Department of Health.
- Positive cases must be isolated for 5 days.
- Positive cases can exit isolation after 7 days without testing.
A close contact (a person who has spent more than four hours with someone who has COVID 19 inside a house, accommodation or care facility) is no longer required to isolate as long as they follow the additional safety measures:
- Notify the school if returning within the 7 day period.
- Undertake RAT testing on school days within the 7 day period (unless the 12 week exemption applies)
- Wear a mask indoors if an adult or a student Yr 3-6.
- Not visit hospitals or care facilities.
- Avoid contact with people at higher risk of infection.
- If symptomatic take a RAT or PCR test.
Isolation rules: If you test positive
Report your result and isolate for at least 5 days.
If you tested positive using a rapid antigen test, you must report your result to the Department of Health online, or by calling 1800 675 398. You don’t need to report your result if you tested positive from a PCR test.
Your isolation period begins on the day you took your positive test.
How long your isolation period goes for depends on whether you have symptoms, which include a fever, sore throat, runny nose, cough or shortness of breath.
If you have tested positive for COVID-19, you must isolate for at least 5 days from the date you took your rapid antigen test or PCR test. For example, if you took your test on Monday, you can leave isolation on Saturday if you have no symptoms. You must isolate whether you have COVID-19 symptoms or not.
When you may leave isolation.
If you are in your 6th day of isolation and you have symptoms – no matter how mild – then you must continue to isolate. If you have a sore throat, runny nose, cough or shortness of breath, you may still be infectious and you may infect others with COVID-19.
If you have no symptoms on the 6th day of isolation, you are free to leave isolation on that same day. You do not need to take a test to leave isolation. For example, if you tested positive on a Monday, you may leave isolation any time the following Saturday.
If you are in your 7th day of isolation and you have symptoms – no matter how mild – then you must continue to isolate. If you have a sore throat, runny nose, cough or shortness of breath, you may still be infectious and you may infect others with COVID-19.
If you have no symptoms on the 7th day you are free to leave isolation on that same day. You do not need to take a test to leave isolation. For example, if you tested positive on a Monday, you can leave isolation any time the following Sunday.
If you leave isolation after 5 days, there are important rules you must follow for those two days:
- you cannot visit a hospital or aged care facility
- you cannot attend work at a hospital, residential aged care facility, disability care facility and in-home care premises (including disability and aged care in the home).
For more information about isolation rules for COVID cases click here: https://www.coronavirus.vic.gov.au/checklist-cases