Shire Christian School is the latest to allow students to stay home in light of coronavirus

Stay home: Sydney Catholic Schools has followed the lead of their NSW government counterparts and urged students to stay home.
Stay home: Sydney Catholic Schools has followed the lead of their NSW government counterparts and urged students to stay home.


Shire Christian School principal Brett Hartley said the school executive and chairman met Monday to discuss "how our school can continue to provide high-quality learning and care" for their 900 students.

"Our position is that parents are able to send their children to school if they think that is in their family's best interests," he said.

"I want to stress, for parents that are workers and have no option, the school is safe for children to attend.

"Based on the Premier's statements, I am anticipating that a substantial number of Shire Christian School parents will choose to keep their children at home from tomorrow.

"Our teachers have already been producing excellent instructions and resources for students who are learning from home

"Students who come to school from tomorrow will go to class as normal. There may be some adjustments to daily routines depending on how many students are present.

"Students who come to school from now on will access the same learning tasks that their peers are completing at home.

"The school's emphasis at the moment is trying to ensure that we provide an excellent quality of learning and pastoral care for all students, whether they are present on the school site or at home."


Catholic schools across St George and Sutherland Shire will follow the lead of NSW public schools and allow students to stay home at least until the end of this school term.

Sydney Catholic Schools spokesman Michael Hopkinson said this morning a statement was being prepared "as we speak" but would follow the NSW Department of Education model announced by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian today.

She said schools would remain open until the end of term, but parents were encouraged to keep their children at home.

"We will be following the premier's advice. Schools will be open but we will be encouraging parents to keep children at home," Mr Hopkinson said.

"If kids cannot stay home, our schools will be open."

Mr Hopkinson confirmed no face-to-face teaching would be done at schools.

"In terms of the mode of learning, kids that come to school will be learning the same way as those at home," he said.

"Teachers will not be teaching classes.

"But schools will continue to be a safe place of learning. Parents will not be left without assistance."

Mr Hopkinson said.in cases where there were not enough teachers to keep a school open, non-teaching Sydney Catholic Schools staff would be brought in or students might be asked to go to neighbouring schools.

Mr Hopkinson said the changes would be in effect at least for the "foreseeable future".

"This will certainly be for the remainder of the term but we will be in consultation with the relevant departments and determine what will happen after that," he said.

More to come.