Kindergarten and year 1 students returned to classrooms on Monday for the first time in more than three months as part of the NSW Government's updated roadmap to return to face-to-face learning.
Under the updated roadmap, Kindergarten and year 1 students returned to school on October 18 while the remainder of students will go back on Monday, October 25.
The NSW Government Education website said: "We have worked closely with NSW Health to develop a framework for COVID-safe school operations".
It said schools would return to face-to-face learning either through a 'staged return' or 'full return', depending on NSW Health conditions in their area.
All schools in Greater Sydney will follow a staged return to onsite learning under Level 3 plus settings from October 18, it said.
"Your school principal will advise you of your planned date of return and the COVID-safe plans on site to support this," it said.
"All department staff must be fully vaccinated before coming on site under the staged return.
"Students completing their HSC are already able to return in a limited way and this will continue for the remainder of Term 3.
"From October 18, these students will have full-time access to school campuses and their teachers."
NSW Health is urging all students aged 12 and older to get vaccinated with either the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible before returning to school.
According to the Roadmap to return - Guidelines for parents and carers, there are five levels of restrictions.
Under Level 3 Plus:
- Priority to return to face-to-face learning will be for students in Kindergarten, Year 1 and Year 12 as well as those completing their HSC.
- All department staff on schools sites must be fully vaccinated from October 18.
- While in indoor settings in schools, masks or face coverings are required for all staff and all students in year 7 and above. Masks are strongly recommended for primary students.
- Applies to all schools in Greater Sydney (including the Blue Mountains and Wollongong) and the following LGAs: Bathurst, Bourke, Broken Hill, Central Coast, Cessnock, Dubbo, Eurobodalla, Goulburn Mulwarre, Kiama, Lake Macquarie, Lithgow, Maitland, Newcastle, Port Stephens, Queanbeyan-Palerang, Shellharbour, Shoalhaven and Wingecarribee.
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