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  • Returning to School/On-site Learning
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This page contains information for our school community (students, staff and parents) regarding the staged return to school/on-site learning. There is a dedicated page for staff specific information.

Introduction & Background

The Chief Health Officer writes:

'I thank teachers, staff and families for their incredible efforts in helping deliver remote and flexible schooling and, in doing so, helping to flatten the curve of the pandemic. These efforts, in addition to significant testing, mean we are now in a position to begin moving back to face-to-face teaching. This is in addition to the available evidence that largely indicates that transmission between children in the school environment is low. This growing evidence, coupled with low levels of community transmission in Victoria, means that the risk posed to staff and students returning to on-site schooling at this time is very low.

Further, The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) has advised that a ‘venue density rule’ of no more than one person per four square metres is not appropriate or practical in classrooms or corridors, nor maintaining 1.5 metres between students during classroom activities.'

Return Dates for Students

  • Year 11 & Year 12 return Tuesday 26th May (following pupil free day on Monday 25 May)
  • Years 7-10 return Tuesday 9th June (following Queens Birthday Public Holiday Monday 8 June) 


  • Staff and students are required to sanitise upon entering and exiting a classroom. Students are encouraged to bring their own sanitiser (70%+ alcohol) and keep it in their bag.
  • Hands free sanitisers are being installed in staff rooms and offices. Sanitation station (hands free) also at reception.
  • Hand sanitiser, paper towel, spray bottle (for surface cleaning) and tissues are provided in every classroom. These stay in the classroom. Stock levels are checked at the end of each day and replenished accordingly. Products used contain 70%+  alcohol.
  • Hygiene requirements including hand-washing will continue to be practiced and encouraged.
  • Doors are to remain open to maximise air flow and to limit touch points (subject to safety and security considerations).
  • It is recommended that windows remain slightly open to enhance air flow - subject to weather conditions.
  • PPE is available for staff where required e.g. First Aid response (masks, gloves, sanitiser, wipes, gowns). Particular guidelines apply for management of First Aid generally and where specific coronavirus-like symptoms are evident. Staff will follow specific Department guidelines in these situations.
  • Student microwaves will not be available for use. This is the current advice due to greater risks associated with food handling and eating. The school is enquiring further with Department OHS professionals.
  • Students are not to drink directly from the water taps and are encouraged to bring their own water bottle. Taps may be used to refill water bottles and are now known as Water Bottle Filling Stations. All of our bubble taps have been converted so that they can be used to refill water bottles. 


  • Bags replace lockers. Students will not have access to their LOCKER. Bags will be placed in the safest area of the room as directed by the teacher i.e. under a chair or under a table. Students must keep their bag with them during the school day. Lockers are the area of closest and most widespread student contact during the day and have a significant impact on movement in corridors.
  • The Department and school mobile phone policy applies with phones turned off and kept in bags rather than lockers. Students are encouraged to leave their phone at home as security of bags cannot be guaranteed.
  • Physical distancing of 1.5 metres is required between all adults. Where possible, staff should avoid being in close proximity to individual students for extended periods.
  • Classrooms are arranged so that there is a 1.5 metre distance between the teacher desk and the front grouping of students (where feasible).
  • Teachers are expected to move around the classroom to assist or supervise students in a similar way to usual.
  • Lines are marked on the floor at the front reception windows to indicate physical distancing for deliveries, tradespeople and other visitors entering the building.
  • Non-contact greetings are encouraged among students and are expected for staff.

Process for Entry and Exit to the School Building & Classrooms - Staggered times

Year 11 &12 students will continue to commence school at the start of the school day at the regular time. Locker Bell 8.35 am - Period 1 - 8.40 am.

Year 7 to Year 10 Students will have a staggered start to the day, arrival time 8.55 am and proceed straight to class for a Period 1 at 9.00 am start.

Please note that students in years 7-10 are asked to remain outside the building until 8:55 am before proceeding to class. There will be staff supervision on the Basketball court/overhang area and Atrium from 8:40-8:55 am.

Exception: Year 7-10 students who have:

  • Students with Music Ensemble rehearsals on Tuesday or Friday mornings from 7:30am may attend their usual rehearsal
  • Students with Instrumental Music lessons from 8:40 am on any day should attend their lesson. Students with instrumental lessons (that rotate through periods 1-6) should watch their Compass schedule closely.

Room changes have been implemented where feasible to reduce the movement of students around the school. Please check your timetable for any room changes.

When you enter through the open classroom door you must sanitise before sitting down. At the end of the session you must sanitise again before you leave the room.

Going to class at the start of the day, at the end of recess and at the end of lunch:

  • Level 3 classrooms: You are expected to go to class 5 minutes before the scheduled bell times for P1, P3 and P5. You need to take responsibility of knowing the time as there will not be a bell to indicate it is time to move to Level 3.
  • Level 1 and Level 2 classrooms: You are expected to go to class by the scheduled bell. 
  • The changeover bell for P2, P4 and P6 will be at the usual scheduled time.
  • This is to reduce the number of people moving on staircases and through corridors at class changeovers.

Leaving class for recess, lunch and 3.05pm.

  • Level 3 classrooms: Your teachers will ask you to leave 5 minutes before the scheduled end of period 2, period 4 and period 6.
  • Level 1 and Level 2 Classrooms: Students remain in classrooms until the bell rings at the regular scheduled bell times.

Remember, the transition between period 1&2, 3&4 and 5&6 does not have any changes to the bell times. You are permitted to move through the corridors using the NEAREST internal or external staircases during these transitions.

Process for Entry and Exit to the School Building and Classrooms - Movement

We have allocated particular staircases both internal and external to get to certain areas of the school. This is to reduce the numbers of students in a particular area at one time and to ease the congestion in corridors.

Please try to become familiar with which staircases are recommended for each section of the school building. Each room has a color coded map on the door indicating which staircase should be used for entry and exit. There are also many color coded posters on walls and exits throughout the school building to refer to.

Level 1

  • Rooms 101,102,103,104 and 105:  Enter and Exit through the Main entrance.
  • Room 106 Food Technology:  Enter and Exit via Richardson Street gate into the Atrium
  • Theatre:  Enter and Exit through western foyer door via atrium
  • Music rooms 
    • M1  Enter and Exit through the main Music entry
    • M2  Enter and Exit through the Gym Foyer 
    • Instrumental Music Rooms use either door.

Level 2

  • Rooms 201, 202, 204:   Enter and Exit via the Basketball Court Fire Exit (north)
  • Rooms 205, 206, 207 and Library:   Enter and Exit via the Main Staircase from foyer
  • Rooms 209, 210, 211, 212, 213:   Enter and Exit via the Richardson Street Fire Exit (south)
  • Room 214:   Enter and Exit via the Atrium Staircase

Level 3

  • Rooms 325, 326, 327:   Enter and Exit via the Gym Staircase
  • Rooms 322, 321 and the Senior Study Hub:   Enter and Exit via the Atrium Staircase
  • Rooms 302, 304, 305:   Enter and Exit via the Basketball Court Fire Exit (North)
  • Rooms 306, 310, 318, 319:   Enter & Exit Back Stairs (behind Library)
  • Rooms, 312, 313, 314, 315, 316:   Enter and Exit via the Richardson Street Fire Exit (South)

Posters and Maps are displayed in every room and at entry points.

First-aid and Illness

  • Unwell staff should not attend on-site work. If a staff member becomes unwell during the school day, they are to advise the Daily Organiser and are expected to return home.
  • Unwell students should not attend school. If a student becomes unwell during the school day they may be directed to General Office, referred to sick bay and monitored by staff. Depending on the nature of their symptoms, staff may contact parents/carers or an emergency contact person to ask them to collect the student. It is not suitable for an unwell child or young person to travel home unsupervised.  
  • Staff, children or young people experiencing compatible symptoms with coronavirus (COVID-19), such as fever, cough or sore throat, will be directed to the General Office, isolated in an appropriate space (Sick Bay, Conference Room 1 or Conference Room 2) with suitable supervision and collected by a parent/carer as soon as possible. In this situation, where staff, children or a young person are experiencing compatible symptoms with coronavirus (COVID-19), a trained first aid officer is to follow the set guidelines on using PPE. Urgent medical attention should be sought where indicated. It is not suitable for an unwell student to travel home unsupervised.
  • Parents/carers of students with complex medical needs (including those with compromised immune systems), should seek advice from the student’s medical practitioner to support decision-making about whether on-site education is suitable, noting that this advice may change depending on the status of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in Victoria. This is in line with the DET Health Care Needs policy. In the event that a medical practitioner deems that a complex medical condition means that on-site education is not suitable, then this needs to be communicated in writing to a Sub-school team Sub-school Leader or Year Level Coordinator with supporting documentation. Accommodations to access and complete the on-site curriculum will then be arranged and communicated to staff.

Supervised Areas at Recess and Lunchtime

  • No student access to Princes Park during recess from Tuesday 26th May to Friday 5th June. There will be no staff supervising the park during recess.
  • Princes Park Duty area will be reduced to Area 1 and Area 2 for lunchtime only from Tuesday 26th May to Friday 5th June.
  • Anthony Avotins and Kim Gray will be assigned to all park duties during lunchtime.

Enhanced Cleaning

The school will receive enhanced cleaning, including cleaning throughout the day of high-touch surfaces with the application of hospital grade disinfectant.

Two Cleaners On-site during the Day

One cleaner will be on-site between 8.00am and 4.00pm and the other between 10.00am and 2.00pm. Their priorities will be to clean high touch areas in classrooms during recess and lunchtimes and to continue with high touch cleaning in areas including staff rooms, offices, corridors, toilets, water bottle filling taps, dining areas and foyers at other times. The library will be cleaned twice daily as negotiated between PHSC Library staff and ISS cleaners.

High-Touch Areas

Use of hospital grade disinfectant to undertake detailed cleaning of:

  • toilets
  • washbasins and taps
  • soap dispensers
  • hand sanitising units
  • all entry and exits points
  • door handles and knobs
  • shared surfaces including staff chairs and desks

End of Day Cleaning

This will be enhanced cleaning with hospital grade disinfectant as per work schedule. 

Learning Area Specific Considerations

Learning Areas have documented procedures specific to their particular learning and classroom context consistent with public health, Department and OHS advice. These arrangements will be communicated to students in respective Learning Area classes.

Library Operations

  • Separate entrance and exit.
  • Doors remain open.
  • PHSC library staff developing their own cleaning schedule with focus on priority areas including shared devices and materials.
  • Returned items to be quarantined and/or sanitised.
  • Computer equipment to be cleaned and sanitised between uses.
  • For paper-based products, leave books untouched in a dedicated quarantine area for a 24-hour period prior to handling and recirculating.
  • Sanitising books with liquid disinfectants can damage books and is not recommended.
  • A staff only zone at the front desk is marked to uphold physical distancing requirements where practicable.


  • Canteen is open from Tuesday 26th May.
  • For the first two weeks, the canteen will offer snacks at both recess and lunchtime. Main meals will be ordered and purchased via the online ordering system or at the canteen. 
  • Canteen prefers online payments but cash and card transactions will be accepted.
  • Canteen will work with the college to finalise an orderly and efficient queuing system for both staff and students.
  • Canteen will ensure the highest hygiene practices are operating as per DET Safe Food Handling Policy.  
  • Sharing of food should not occur.

Student Wellbeing Offices

  • Wellbeing staff to only see one student at a time in counselling rooms *TBC
  • Hand Sanitiser is also available in wellbeing area.
  • Meetings with parents/carers to be held in available classrooms  to allow for physical distancing; or remotely.
  • DET SSS and other meetings with external organisations to occur online where possible.
  • Chill Room to be closed with limited access to a quiet space on Wednesday and Friday only.
  • Doors left open when possible to allow airflow.
  • Cleaning products available in each room to allow for immediate touch point cleaning after each student/staff meeting.
  • Flyers and handouts to be packed and offered in small bundles .


  • The use of the lift is restricted to a maximum of one adult or two students; unless with the specific permission of the Principal.

Meetings & Visitors

  • Parents will be required to to avoid or minimise time in or around the school grounds. Parent meetings are to be organised remotely via zoom or telephone call (other than in exceptional circumstances).
  • Visitors to school grounds are limited to those delivering or supporting essential school services and operations (e.g. student health and wellbeing services, specialist curriculum programs, maintenance workers).
  • Additional staff, including parent volunteers, are discouraged from attending school. Activities dependent on and involving parents (e.g. specialist programs,1:1 reading) are cancelled.
  • Parent Teacher interview arrangements will meet physical distancing requirements or be conducted virtually  - details to be advised.
  • Activities that involve on-site attendance by students from different educational institutions will not occur.
  • School assemblies, excursions, camps and other non-essential large gatherings will be postponed or adapted using technology.

Mobile phone policy

  • The mobile phone policy has not changed with the exception that your bag has become your locker. Refer to the school Smart Device Use Policy for details.
  • All mobile phones must be switched off and placed in your bag. If you are using your mobile phone in class or during school hours you will be required to hand it in at the general office to be collected at the end of the school day consistent with the Smart Device Use Policy
  • Remember that mobile phones are not to be used throughout the school day and that this includes during recess and lunchtime.
  • If you are concerned about the safety of the phone and it can be left at home, then leave it at home. 
  • A temporary alternative option while lockers are not accessible is to hand it to Mr Avotins in Room 311 to be locked away for the day.

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