COVID-19 update - Tuesday 3 May 2022

Dear Families of CBC Fremantle

Thank you for your support in what has been a wonderful start to the term.

On Friday 29 April, the current public health measures in Western Australia were eased to what is now being called "baseline settings".  Catholic Education Western Australia (CEWA) has been working with the Department of Health and Department of Education to determine the full implication of the new baseline settings for schools.  As a result, new Operating Guidelines for Schools have been developed and will be introduced from this week.  A comprehensive overview of these guidelines will be provided for families by CEWA soon.

Mask Wearing

  • Under the new baseline settings masks are no longer mandatory for students and staff.
  • However, masks are required to be worn at all times outside of the home for asymptomatic close contacts.
  • Masks are required to be worn on public transport, school buses, and shared transport.
  • Staff and students may opt to continue wearing masks as a personal choice.
  • Mask wearing is encouraged where physical distancing is not possible.
  • Please note the following change: students and staff do not have to wear a mask when they return to school after having COVID-19.
  • Please ensure your son continues to bring a supply of masks to school in the event he is required to wear one.

COVID-19 at CBC

The College has recorded 230 COVID-19 positive cases in our community since the beginning of the Omicron outbreak. Today, there are 33 active cases amongst students and staff. The current case distribution across year groups is: seven Year 7 students, three Year 8 students, three Year 9 students, two Year 10 students, five Year 11 students and nine Year 12 students.

Close Contacts

  • Parents must inform the school of their son's close contact status by emailing sservices@cbcfremantle.wa.edu.au.
  • Asymptomatic household close contacts who return to school must follow the requirements set out by the WA Government which includes wearing masks at all times and daily negative RATs before school each morning for the seven day isolation period.

Self-Reporting of Positive Cases

Please continue to use the self-reporting portal to record COVID-19 results via this link for all positive student cases. If your child has a positive RAT result, you need to register via the WA Health RAT Register.

  Mentor Groups

We are excited to announce that, as of Monday 9 May, the College will revert to our vertical Mentor Group structure. This will mean that the boys will return to their original Mentor Group and room, which was allocated at the beginning of the year. To provide an opportunity for boys to reconnect with their original group, there will be an extended Mentor Period next week.

CBC Events

The further easing of restrictions means even more of our school activities can resume, and we look forward to sharing these events with you. The following postponed events will proceed this term:

  • Year 7 Parent information session and wine and cheese night will take place Thursday 12 May.
  • The Year 13 Breakfast and Academic 95 Club College Assembly will take place Thursday 23 June.

The invitation to this Thursday's Mother's Day Liturgy has been extended to our Year 7 boys and their mums and grandmothers only, as a measured and cautious approach to the easing of restrictions this week while there is continued presence of COVID-19 in the community. Any students who are brothers of Year 7s attending are also welcome to join the Liturgy. The invitation was extended to Year 7 families because they have not experienced any of the CBC events we would normally  already have enjoyed at this time of year. There has been no Opening Mass, no House Week, no whole of school carnivals, no onsite parent evenings and no Edmund Rice Day, just to name a few of the important milestones in becoming a CBC family.

We have received feedback from several families about their disappointment with this decision. We understand this, but while restrictions have ended, the difficulties in managing COVID-19 remain. Each day, we can have between 10 and 20 staff away. Fortunately, we have not yet had to collapse classes or engage critical workers, as has happened at many schools, due to careful management, a supportive College community and the goodwill of our teaching and relief staff. For this reason, while we seek to engage with families wherever possible including through large scale events, the safety of our school community and the daily operation of the College is paramount, and so our 'reopening' is carefully considered and gradual.

The Mother's Day Liturgy will be livestreamed and a link will be emailed out on Wednesday for those who are not attending in person. We are also planning a special Year 12 Mother and Son evening in Term 3 similar to one that we hosted in 2020 when Mother's Day was cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Details of future events will be shared as they are planned.

Although restrictions have eased significantly, COVID-19 continues to be transmitted in the community. Keep safe, and if you need support, advice or assistance, please be in touch.

Kind regards

Ms Jenny Knox
Vice Principal