Key Info

  • The Perth and Peel regions have returned to pre-lockdown conditions and pending no further advice from the Department of Health, Western Australia (WA) all Catholic schools across the State will commence Term 3 with Stage 5 COVID-19 protocols in place.
  • Travel is restricted to remote communities.
  • Controlled interstate borders and the international hard border remain in place.
Updated: 19 July 2021

For up to the minute information please refer to the Western Australian (WA) Department of Health and WA Government of websites; HealthyWA  and WA.gov.au, as these sites are continually updated with new information as circumstances change.

Catholic Education Western Australia continues to align with WA Government advice to provide our schools and school community with relevant information and updates as these relate to students and staff.

On this page

The health, wellbeing and safety of all students remains our highest priority, and additional cleaning and hygiene regimes will be maintained in line with advice from the WA Department of Health.  Schools will continue to practise physical distancing between adults, where possible, and encourage good personal hygiene at all times.

Knowing this is a uniquely challenging time for all of us, Catholic schools will continue to focus on the care and wellbeing of students, staff and families as we unite to manage the risks of COVID-19 in our community.

Phase Five in Catholic schools

Are schools open?

Yes. All Catholic schools across Western Australia are open.

Who is required to attend school?

All students should attend school unless they are unwell, have a medical referral to learn from home or have been advised to do so by State Government Authorities.

What if my child is unwell?

Students who are unwell should stay home. Parents are asked to seek medical advice if their child exhibits symptoms of COVID-19. Normal processes for advising the school of a child’s absence will apply.

Are before and after school care (Out-of-School Hours Care) able to operate on school sites?

Yes.

Do any students or staff have to wear a mask?

No students or staff are not required to wear masks.

Are parents allowed in schools?

Parents, caregivers and visitors are allowed in schools and are required to:

  • sign in using normal school operating procedures,
  • practice physical distancing between adults, where practicable; and
  • adhere to exemplary hand and respiratory hygiene practices.
Are schools required to use the safeWA app?

No, the use of the safeWA app is optional for schools.

All visitors to schools must sign in using normal school operating procedures.

Why is it important for children to attend school?

It is important for students to be physically connected with their school, staff and classmates.

Every day away from engaged learning has a negative impact on student outcomes.

The School Education Act 1999 states the requirement that: A student must attend on the days on which the school is open for instruction.

When a student is enrolled in a school, it is compulsory for them to attend every day of the instructional program.

Students whose parents and carers choose to keep them at home, without medical reason, will be marked as absent.

All the evidence supports regular attendance as being critical to educational outcomes. There is no educationally safe level of absence.

Should parents and caregivers enter schools when they drop off and collect their child?

Parents and caregivers are able to enter school grounds to drop off and collect their children and to attend scheduled meetings with staff. Parents should enter classrooms with the approval of their principal and at the invitation of their child's teacher.

What if parents and caregivers need to enter school sites outside of dropping off or collecting their child?

All visitors with a lawful purpose are allowed onto the school grounds. Physical distancing for adults and good hygiene practices apply. All official visitors are required to sign in.

 

Will schools provide learning programs for students at home without a medical referral?

No. For students who are absent without a medical referral, there is no expectation for the school to continue to provide learning programs or work packages. Students approved to learn from home will continue to be supported in their learning.

Will I have to pay school fees if I am facing significant financial stress due to COVID-19?

If parents or caregivers have concerns in this regard, please contact your school Principal directly to confidentially discuss financial support arrangements.

For more information on the options, which are immediately available to all families with children in Catholic schools, please click here

Health and hygiene practices in schools

How will you keep my child safe?

The health, safety and wellbeing of students and staff will remain our highest priority.

Catholic schools will continue to review and respond to cleaning and hygiene protocols in line with advice from the Department of Health.

Playgrounds are open and play equipment is being cleaned in accordance with the AHPPC guidelines. When accessing playgrounds students will be reminded to focus on hygiene and wash hands before and after using this equipment.

Schools will adhere to all requirements to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff is maintained, including physical distancing practices for supervisors and staff, where possible.

Child protection measures will also continue to be at the forefront of all undertakings and staff will be adhering to their Code of Conduct obligations, as always.

Unwell students, parents or staff are to remain at home until they are well.

What if there is a confirmed case in a school or our school community?

In the event of a confirmed case of COVID-19, any temporary school closure will be advised by the Department of Health and the school will enact its Six Step Response Plan before the school is reopened. All Catholic schools in Western Australia have dedicated School Response Plans which contain detailed information about how they are to respond to a confirmed case in their school or school community. Each school has formed an Incident Response Team and have been provided with a detailed Resource Pack to help them deal with a confirmed case.

Rest assured that the health, safety and wellbeing of students and staff is our highest priority. All schools have additional cleaning measures in place and unwell students or staff are to remain home until they receive a medical clearance to attend school. Schools are ensuring arrangements are in place for regular and thorough handwashing. Posters and information are being displayed on the school grounds.

All Catholic schools continue to review and respond to cleaning and hygiene protocols in line with advice from the Department of Health.

Which school activities will take place?

Sports training, games and interschool competitions – including swimming - may proceed with good hygiene practices at all schools.

Indoor facilities including school halls, gymnasiums, libraries, community centres, museums, galleries, and recreation centres may operate, observing the physical distancing requirements for adults, where possible.

What about school facilities such as the canteen and library?

School canteen

Canteens are permitted to provide all services, but must abide by physical distancing for adults, where possible.

School library

Library access should be managed to ensure supervisors/staff maintain physical distancing, where possible, and that good hygiene practices are in place.

Is the uniform shop open?

Uniform shops are open to parents, where increased cleaning and hygiene practices, which meet the required AHPPC guidelines, are in place and observing the physical distancing requirements for adults, where possible. 

Parents and Carers

What can parents and carers do to help?

Parents and caregivers can help by:

  • Letting your school know if your child is unwell.
  • Letting your school know if your child will be engaging in teaching and learning at school or from home if they have a medical referral to learn from home or live with a family member who is medically vulnerable.
  • Making sure your school has the correct contact details for your family.
  • Making sure you’ve installed your school’s communication apps on your device.
  • Encouraging your child to practice good hygiene, at home and at school.
How can I talk to my child about COVID-19?

When talking about coronavirus to your child, make sure it’s in a way that suits their age and development. When you do talk, listen to what’s worrying them and address their concerns.

Take a look at our wellbeing and resources sections.

More information

  • Visit the Healthy WA COVID-19 website for more information and details about the Novel coronavirus
  • Call the Novel coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080
  • For general or travel related queries about Novel coronavirus please go to the healthdirect website
  • You can also visit the World Health Organisation website for more information about the Novel coronavirus and for updates
  • Talk to your local GP or Community Health Centre

Additional support services include: 

  • Kids Helpline – 1800 55 1800 
  • Headspace – 1800 650 890
  • Parent Helpline – 1300 1300 52 
  • Beyond Blue – 1300 22 4636 
  • Lifeline – 13 11 14