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COVID-19 update - Tuesday 1 March

Dear Families of CBC Fremantle

I hope you are safe and well. The following is a brief update regarding COVID-19 at CBC Fremantle and a couple of answers to frequently asked questions.

At the moment, the College has seven members of our community who have tested positive for COVID-19 or are waiting on PCR tests to confirm positive rapid antigen tests. Two of these are Year 11 students who may have been infectious while at the College, one on Friday and one yesterday. No staff have been deemed close contacts but some students have, and as a result they will be isolating at home for seven days. We currently have a small percentage of students at home for COVID-19 related reasons – generally they are waiting on test results, have been deemed close contacts, or are isolating with family members who are close contacts. Most of these students are working on Continuity of Learning Plans that teaching staff facilitate. School continues as usual onsite following the guidelines provided by the Health Department of Western Australia (WA Health) and Catholic Education Western Australia (CEWA).

Below are some FAQs that may help families navigate this terrain.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Who is deemed a close contact in a secondary school setting?

The College determines close contacts on behalf of WA Health. Students and staff deemed a close contact are advised directly and are required to get tested immediately and quarantine for seven days from exposure. The following are current close contact definitions:

  • More than two hours in a classroom environment where masks were not worn by both the person who tested positive and the people in that classroom.
  • More than 15 minutes face-to-face where masks were not worn by both the person who tested positive and their potential contacts. This will include members of a close peer group who eat lunch with a COVID-19 positive person.

What happens if my son is deemed a close contact?

The College will contact you as soon as possible. Your son will be required to isolate for seven days, with testing requirements on day 1 and at the end of isolation. We provide detailed instructions to families of students who are close contacts. 

If someone in my family is a close contact, is everyone deemed a close contact?

No, however, close contacts are required to isolate in separate living spaces from their families (eg their bedroom). Where a close contact is unable to effectively isolate from siblings or parents, those sharing the living space with the close contact are also required to quarantine.

What if my son tests positive on a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT)?

Please seek a PCR test, isolate and let the College know as soon as possible. At this stage, PCR tests are still the preferred method of testing.

What if my son tests positive on a PCR?

Let the College know immediately so that we can begin contact tracing. WA Health will provide you with information and instructions about health care and isolating.

How often will we receive communication?

The College will provide regular updates. As caseloads increase in the community, these updates will be on a weekly basis. Please do not listen to rumours or social media - we will communicate directly with families if students are deemed close contacts. Some parents have received mixed or confusing messages from the internet and helplines – if you are in any doubt, please contact us.

Thank you for your patience and support. The College is doing all we can to mitigate and slow transmission, and keep our community safe. Please continue to do everything you are doing and continue to encourage your sons to wear masks correctly, maintain social distancing and personal hygiene practices.  Remember, if your son wears his mask correctly and consistently, and puts his mask back on as soon as he finishes eating his lunch, he will not be deemed a close contact.

As the situation evolves in WA, we will continue to adapt and refine how we can best serve our students and College community in line with advice from CEWA and WA Health. If you need support, advice or assistance, please be in touch. You can reach me directly on 0499 020 226 or Mr Burgio on 0400 880 861.

Kind regards

Ms Jenny Knox
Vice Principal