Schools forced to post new COVID-19 cases to Facebook
Schools will be forced to post any new cases of COVID-19 to their Facebook account, children will be banned from drinking from bubblers and playground equipment will be closed unless it can be regularly cleaned by teachers.
These are the strict new rules which will be in place when students return to school next term.
Other measures in the school include the use of "online staffrooms" to share resources and experience to support one another without making physical contact while classroom windows must be opened to improve cross ventilation.
The rules are part of a new document issued to principals this week to help them transition children back to school safely and is based on Australian Health Protection Principal Committee advice.
Sharing food or lending pens and pencils to classmates is strictly prohibited while teachers will watch young students washing their hands to make sure they are doing it correctly.
"Young students will be supervised and supported with hand washing to ensure they are practising good hygiene while at schools."
Schools will also be given a boost to their coffers to fund a 25 per cent increase in the amount of time cleaners spend at the school to ensure the virus is wiped off surfaces.
In addition to an ample supply of hand sanitiser, disinfectant wipes should be provided to clean high touch areas including desks, chairs, photocopiers and computers.
"Every school will have hand sanitiser distributed throughout the school for use by staff and students," it said.
The Department of Education would not reveal where its stockpiles of hand sanitiser were being held but said it had an ample supply ahead of school returning.
"For Term 2, the department has forecast, procured and secured the necessary supplies, including toilet paper, paper rolls, hand sanitiser, soap and a variety of personal protection equipment required for specialist settings across over 2200 schools," a Department spokeswoman said.
School staff requiring more supplies can send a message to a dedicated email account.
Principals are also told in the event of a further outbreak, schools must update parents on social media channels.
"Schools will advise their school community through the school website, Facebook accounts and other local messaging systems of any confirmed cases that impact the school," it said.
The guidebook states students who become unwell will immediately be removed from the classroom and put in isolation.
It said if there is a confirmed case, there is a dedicated team of staff to "rapidly assess" and take action in accordance with NSW Health advice.
"Where required, a school may cease operations based on advice from NSW Health to allow time to complete contact tracing and have the school cleaned prior to staff and students returning," the new guidebook states.
Originally published as Schools forced to post new COVID-19 cases to Facebook