Correspondence has been received by Outdoors SA that school camp programs will continue in the same way as week 8. This is disappointing news for our sector that we know has been accumulating $1.5 million in losses every week. We had been hopeful that by week 9 we would have seen a further relaxation of policy, but that is not to be.
The positive element is that the previous allowance of tent camping and transitioning programs to day camps will continue. So we encourage providers to continue to move schools into this style of delivery were possible.
Below is the current policy information from the Department for Education:
Department for Education schools
“Settings from week 9
COVID safe measures for schools, preschools and children’s centres continue to be reviewed on a regular basis with SA Health.
We recognise that every school and preschool is being affected by COVID-19 in different ways and that principals and preschool directors are best placed to make local decisions.
While we previously flagged some potential relaxing of restrictions from week 9 (eg indoor concerts and assemblies), our recommendation to government schools and preschools is that you continue to maintain existing settings for the remainder of the term due to the current situation.
Given the risks arising and complex management if there are COVID-19 cases, the following activities cannot proceed in government schools:
- overnight camps that require students to use indoor communal settings or stay in accommodation with more than 2 people (such as dorms)
- overnight camps that require travel time that exceeds 2.5 hours.
All other COVID safe measures remain in place.”
You can see the updated restrictions on the following Department for Education page
Catholic Education schools
Outdoors SA has also received the following correspondence from Catholic Education
For CESA schools:
“The Week 5-8 activity restrictions which have previously been confirmed to apply to Week 9 will continue to apply in Weeks 10 and 11 also. A few of the settings are emphasised below:
- Excursions – may proceed as planned.
- Parent teacher interviews – ideally these should continue to occur by telephone or online unless there are specific conversations that are best held in person, in a COVID safe way.
- Camps – for the balance of the term, in addition to SACE required camps, overnight camps may be held if they comply with the following:
- Tent camping only (preferably single occupant, maximum 2 people).
- Held entirely in outdoor natural environment – no indoor communal settings (such as dorms).
- Single classes or entire year levels separated into class-sized groups.
- Sole occupancy of the campsite by the school or cohort where possible.
- Travel time not to exceed 2.5 hours.
The camp provider must also have a COVID Safe Plan in place and the school is required adhere to any additional requirements set out in that plan.
Students and staff should not go on camp if they are symptomatic or feeling mildly unwell.
Arrangements should be in place so that parents are required to pick up any students who become symptomatic while on camp, and staff can return home if symptomatic.”