COVID-Smart For 2022 School Year
Students will return to school under COVID-smart settings that will minimise the risk of the virus. Every student and teacher in NSW government and non-government schools will be able to receive rapid antigen test (RAT) kits before school returns on 1st February. The COVID-Smart Plan to keep schools open and students safe includes:
• Twice a week surveillance testing for primary and high school students, school staff and early childhood staff. Surveillance testing will be undertaken for the first four weeks of term, with two weeks of supply distributed before term starts.
• Mandatory mask wearing for all staff and high school students, with masks encouraged for children in primary schools.
• Limiting interaction between year groups.
• Limiting visitors to those providing essential curriculum and wellbeing support.
• COVID-safe settings in place for music, sport and excursions.
• Maximising natural and mechanical ventilation, with air purifiers dispatched to where they are needed.
• Contingency plans in place to manage any disruptions to the workforce.
The government is distributing more than 12 million RATs to over 3,150 government, non-government schools and early childhood centres. More information on the return to school settings for NSW public schools is available at https://education.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/advice-for-families
Travel Boost Regional Seniors
Applications are open for the expanded 2022 NSW Regional Seniors Travel Card valued at $250. The popular initiative, which had seen more than 690,000 cards issued to regional seniors since the start of 2020, had been extended for another two years. Eligible applicants will receive a $250 pre-paid Visa card that can be used for fuel, taxis, pre-booked NSW TrainLink regional trains and coaches, and select community transport services. With the latest COVID-19 health advice, seniors are strongly advised to apply online or call 13 77 88 rather than visit a service centre. More information can be found at service.nsw.gov.au/regionalseniorstravel
Western NSW Local Health District (WNSWLHD) is urging people to take extra precautions to protect themselves against mosquito bites, and acquiring mosquito-borne disease. When outside cover up as much as possible with light-coloured, loose-fitting clothing and covered footwear, particularly at dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active. Use an effective insect repellent on exposed skin. Re-apply repellent within a few hours. Use insecticide sprays, vapour dispensing units (indoors) and mosquito coils (outdoors) to clear rooms or repel mosquitoes from an area. Cover all windows, doors, vents and other entrances with insect screens. Remove any water-holding containers outside the house where mosquitoes could breed. For further information go to: www.health.nsw.gov.au/environment/pests/vector/Pages/resources.aspx