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Coronavirus Update (COVID-19) Wed 18 March

Dear parents and carers

We have some further updates for you regarding the proactive management of COVID-19, as of Wednesday 18 March 8.00am – new information is in bold.

Attendance at School:

We would like to reassure parents that if your child stays at home and self isolates for ANY reason this is considered an APPROVED absence. Continue to contact Student Services for absences and specify self isolation and reasons for this.

Whilst the college is open and operational, teachers will be preparing face to face lessons as required. If your child is absent, please ask them to refer to Connect for Course Outlines and some tasks. They can also liaise with friends to catch up on work missed. Please refer to the Assessment Policy re APPROVED absences and how this will affect your child’s assessments. Staff will be posting some  course materials in their Connect classes for all students to access. Staff are currently preparing for full participation online in the event of a full school closure. I have asked staff to maintain their focus on their preparation for their current attending classes.

As of Wednesday 18 March, several key extracurricular events have been cancelled or postponed.
Please see below for the following list and don’t hesitate to contact the organising teacher if you have specific queries.

•    College Ball: Due to the recent adjustment and requirement to limit non essential gatherings to 100, the College Ball on Friday 20 March will not take place.   We are currently investigating options to hold the Ball later in the year.  We understand the emotions many students will feel as a result of this important rite of passage not taking place as planned and we will be speaking with them in person today during their Pathway lesson.  Further information regarding the Ball will be emailed directly to Year 12 parents in due course.
•    Instrumental Music School (IMS) lessons attended by Primary schools – Cancelled Tuesdays
•    All Professional Learning attended by staff – Cancelled
•    All assemblies, including single year group assemblies – Cancelled

•    Specialist Expo 16 March – POstponed
•    Year 11 River Cruise – Postponed/Reassess Term 4
•    Parent Teacher Learning Interview Nights Wed 1 April, Tues 7 April – Postponed/Reassess Term 3
•    All Sports carnivals, including Interschool – Cancelled (Commencing this Wednesday 18 March)
•    All other excursions, gatherings and camps for Term 1- Cancelled
•    Several Gifted and Talented activities and competitions – Cancelled

School Closure:
If a WA school has to close due to a confirmed case, it will be on advice from the WA Health Department’s Chief Health Officer based on school or community spread. I can reassure parents that over the recent weeks, no member of staff or any student at Fremantle College has been confirmed to have the virus and we will continue to fulfill our educative role in a calm and positive manner every day.
There are, however, measures we are putting in place across the college in order to be compliant with Department guidelines and in the community spirit of practicing social distancing where we can.

Communication with the college:
Due to the changing nature of this crisis, it is important at this time that you are receiving all email correspondence from the college. The college will be using Connect as the key platform for any potential work to be completed at home. Therefore, we ask all parents do their best to;
•    Organise/arrange wifi access and a device if this is not already in place.
•    Switch on notifications through Connect to receive an alert when work or class information is coming home.
•    Establish an area to complete work if this is not already in place. 

We also encourage all parents to email teachers directly to gauge their child’s progress, in the light of the Parent Teacher Learning Interview Nights being postponed. Teachers are expecting this and are happy to communicate with you personally.

How to minimise the spread of COVID-19:
•    Frequently washing your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or using an alcohol based hand gel.
•    Refraining from touching mouth and nose.
•    If coughing or sneezing, covering your nose and mouth with a paper tissue or flexed elbow.
•    Dispose of used tissues immediately after use and perform hand hygiene.
•    Avoiding close contact with anyone if you, or they, have a cold or flu-like symptoms (maintain a distance of at least 1 metre).

We have been communicating these hygiene measures to students and working to increase their understanding of COVID-19, social distancing and the need for careful hygiene around this time.

Information regarding attendance:

We are following guidelines from the Department of Education in regards to school attendance and will update you regularly. The most recent information regarding attendance can be found at the top of this email.

Who cannot attend school – advice as at 16 March 2020

The Prime Minister has introduced measures placed on international arrivals into Australia. This means a mandatory 14 day self-isolation requirement will be placed on all international arrivals into Australia.

Students or staff who have been tested for COVID-19 should follow the advice of the WA Department of Health and stay away from school whilst awaiting results. Please notify the college if your child undertakes any testing for COVID-19.

Students or staff also need to self-quarantine if they have been informed by public health authorities that they have been in close contact with a confirmed case of Coronavirus. They must isolate themselves for 14 days after the date of last contact with the confirmed case. Please notify the college if this is the case.


1. If my child presents with cold and flu symptoms at home what should they do?

Stay at home. If your child presents with these symptoms and HAS HAD POSSIBLE EXPOSURE TO THE VIRUS, then they should not return to school until they have medical confirmation that they do not have the virus.
If your child has epidemiological history or potential contact we recommend you take them to one of three fever clinics setup at Fiona Stanley Hospital, Royal Perth Hospital and Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital, which are open from 8am to 8pm 7 days a week. 

2. As of midnight 15 March 2020 all people who have returned from overseas must self-isolate for 14 days. Does the whole family self isolate?

No, if a parent is isolating, students can still attend school.

3. Our family has been in close contact with a confirmed case of Coronavirus what do I do?

Your child cannot come to school and you must contact Student Services by phone to inform us of your particular circumstance. Your family need to isolate themselves for 14 days after the date of last contact with the confirmed case.

4. I don’t want my child to come to school.

It is your choice as a family to decide whether to send your child to school or not. Your child will have access to some class materials on Connect. This absence will be classified as an APPROVED absence. Assessments will be completed on return and in accordance with Assessment Policy

5. If my child presents with cold and flu symptoms at school what should they do?

Tell their classroom teacher who will ask them to go to Student Services where staff will follow the processes recommended from the Department of Health. Students will be dealt with on a case by case basis depending on circumstances surrounding the child. Parents/caregivers will be contacted as necessary.

We understand that this crisis is continually evolving and many families are concerned about it at school. We are working as a community to ensure all proactive measures are taken, and our students understand carefully, and without panic, the actions they can take to reduce their risk, as well as that of the community.

Thank you for your patience at this time; please continue to check your emails for further updates as they arise.


Mark Jeffery