How has that affected schools in the Southern Highlands?
Well, everyone at Chevalier College is going above and beyond to ensure they are COVID safe.
Chevalier College principal Chris McDermott said even though the school term began this week, students were already showing resilience.
"It is impressive the way they, and our staff, have embraced and coped with our new requirements around mask wearing indoors, a requirement we have made to keep our community safe," Mr McDermott said.
"We aim to maintain some sense of normality and optimism and continue to provide excellent education, while complying with all public health orders, our utmost priority is safety."
Like most schools in the Southern Highlands, the college is considered in the level two category, meaning the following restrictions apply to them.
All staff and students are expected to be at school unless they have even the mildest of COVID-19 symptoms.
While masks or face coverings are recommended in all indoor settings, Mr McDermott said the college was making it compulsory.
"We decided to mandate mask wearing, except where an exemption applies," Mr McDermott said.
"This is because we have approximately seven per cent of staff and students from the Greater Sydney region."
Non-essential visitors aren't permitted in schools, but parents visiting the school should maintain physical distancing by avoiding gathering outside of school gates, remaining outside of school grounds, follow mask-wearing requirements and sign-in using the Service NSW QR code.
Singing, chanting, group repetition and choirs are permitted if conducted outside in a well-ventilated area, but the College has just cancelled it all.
However, bands and ensembles are permitted in-line with current health advice. Dance or drama are also permitted in-line with COVID-Safe practices within classes. Library activities are permitted in-line with the Infection Control requirements.
Excursions should be limited to outdoor locations within the Local Government Area of the school where the school can demonstrate COVID safe practices.
Schools must also cease the following activities.
- Camps and out of area field trips.
- Overnight stays.
- International excursions.
- Student visits to aged care facilities.
- Community events within school hours.
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