Kia ora koutou

A few families have contacted the school concerned about the potential transmission of COVID-19 between students. We have been asked about the school’s guidelines regarding sick children and COVID-19 testing.

The advice we are providing is as follows. It is based on the latest from the Ministry of Health: Call your doctor if your child is feeling unwell or has any one of the COVID-19 symptoms and is a close contact of a confirmed case, has recently travelled overseas, or been in contact with recent travellers.

They will talk with you and arrange for your child to be assessed if they think this is needed. This assessment will be based on your child’s symptoms and circumstances.

If your child has no risk factors for exposure to COVID-19, but has symptoms consistent with COVID-19, they may still be tested for COVID-19 for surveillance purposes to help ensure that we do not have community transmission of COVID-19 in New Zealand. In this situation, there is no need to self-isolate while awaiting test results, however, as your child most likely has another illness, you should keep them home while unwell, and follow the advice of your health practitioner on when you can return to school.

You can also call Healthline on 0800 358 5453. This is free and you can call any time, it is open all day every day. Someone will talk with you about your symptoms and recommend whether you should see your GP or need emergency care. Healthline also has access to interpreters if you need one.

Please continue to keep children at home if they are unwell. Make the necessary judgements about issues such as testing and how long they should be away from school, with the help of medical practitioners.

I hope this helps answer some of your questions. We really do appreciate everyone’s efforts to keep our community healthy and safe. Let us continue to work together to keep our school a place that welcomes all whilst providing the safest environment.

Robin Kirkham


26 June 2020