COVID-19 Information Hub
To consolidate all information from Blackfriars about COVID-19, we have created this information hub which will be regularly updated as news comes to hand. Please click on the headings below that are relevant to you and stay up-to-date with the latest advice.
Until further notice and advice, we are open to all students who have not recently travelled overseas, who are not experiencing cold or flu symptoms and who have not been in contact with anyone in these categories.
Our current approach is informed by directives from both Federal and State Governments, as well as Catholic Education SA.
This page is also available in Vietnamese / tiếng vệt >
Current precautions being taken at Blackfriars
- Social distancing is encouraged at all times (1.5m between individuals) when moving around the school.
- For a simple explanation on the importance of social distancing, please read this article by Professor Thomas Perls from Boston University
- Where possible, classrooms have been reorganised to allow for more personal space.
- Students are not to have physical contact, including handshakes, and are not to share drink bottles or food.
- We have cancelled events, excursions, assemblies, retreats, co-curricular sports and activities (including training, matches and rehearsals) and camps until further notice.
- Please see below for a comprehensive listing of cancellations
- Staff and students are receiving regular communication and training on personal hygiene measures. Subject-specific hygiene practices are being consistently reinforced by all staff.
- Recess and lunch breaks are now being staggered to minimise the number of students in the yard at any given time and designated play areas have been assigned.
- Whilst the school has provisions for hand sanitiser, including supplies in every classroom and common areas, students are encouraged to carry their own hand sanitiser and tissues.
- We ask that all parents / caregivers do not accompany their child to classrooms unless in exceptional circumstances.
- We strongly encourage students / families to take advantage of our cashless payment systems operating in both the school canteen and Uniform Shop, to avoid spreading germs through handling cash
- Cleaning contractors are on-site from 9.00am to 12.00pm daily, until further notice, to undertake additional duties across the campus including regular spraying of door handles and spraying / sanitising of common areas.
- UNIFORM SHOP PROTOCOLS
- Families wishing to make purchases at the Uniform Shop are asked to call ahead and make an appointment on 8169 3950
- Families without an appointment may be asked to wait outside to facilitate adequate social distancing protocols inside the Uniform Shop
- Families are strongly encouraged to take advantage of our cashless payment system and avoid the use of cash
Specific information for ELC families
- ELC routines have been adjusted to allow for more time spent outside (weather permitting).
- We are encouraging students to maintain a reasonable distance between them in their play.
- This is aided by no ball games and no group time until further notice.
- Sleepers are being accommodated in one of the downstairs rooms to facilitate maintaining reasonable distance between individuals.
- We ask that where possible, parents / caregivers hand over their child outside individual home rooms.
- Sign-in iPads are now located in the ELC foyer.
- Normal ELC hours will be maintained, including early- and late-care, until further notice.
- Please note that Vacation Care will not be offered in the April school holiday period.
- In the event of a school closure at Blackfriars, all ELC programs (including early-care, sessional pre-school and late-care) will cease operations until further notice.
If you have any questions, or are directly affected by COVID-19, please contact Karen McEntee, ELC Director.
Specific information for OSHC families
- OSHC routines have been adjusted to allow for more time spent outside (weather permitting).
- We are actively mentoring students maintaining a reasonable distance between them in their play.
- This is aided by no ball games including football, soccer, cricket, handball, basketball, etc.
- Group activities are being staggered to minimise the number of students in close proximity at any given time and designated play areas have been assigned.
- Sign-out registers are now located outside Frassati Hall. Parents / caregivers are asked not to enter the Hall until further notice.
- Please use hand sanitiser provided before using pens at the sign out register.
- Please refer to the OSHC Hygiene Practises letter distributed in mid-March for the best advice on maintaining good personal hygiene.
- Please note that Vacation Care will not be offered in the April school holiday period.
- In the event of a school closure at Blackfriars, all OSHC programs will cease operations until further notice.
If you have any questions, or are directly affected by COVID-19, please contact Rita Quaini, OSHC Director.
Following is a list of events / activities that have been cancelled to date:
- Harmony Day – Wednesday 18 March
- Secondary Athletics Carnival – Thursday 19 March
- Primary School Mass – Friday 20 March
- Year 11 Retreat – Tuesday 24 March
- Open Night – Wednesday 25 March
- Year 10 Outdoor Education Camp – Thursday 26 to Friday 27 March
- Parent / Teacher Interviews – Wednesday 1 April – These will be delivered electronically via a dedicated SEQTA Marksbook task. More information to follow.
- Principal’s Tour – Thursday 2 April
- Dominican Feud – Thursday 2 April
- Primary Sports Day – Friday 3 April
- Gen Connection Concert – Sunday 5 April
- Tertiary Studies and Careers Expo (Adelaide Convention Centre) – Sunday 5 April
- Year 7 Retreat – Monday 6 April
- Year 8 Retreat – Tuesday 7 April
- RAA Street Smart – Tuesday 7 April
- Year 9 Retreat – Wednesday 8 April
- Easter Liturgy – Thursday 9 April
- Generations in Jazz (Mt Gambier) – Friday 1 to Sunday 3 May
- NAPLAN testing – Tuesday 12 to Friday 22 May
Events / Activities cancelled until further notice:
- All Prefect-led community events and initiatives
- All co-curricular sports and activities (including training, matches and rehearsals)
- All camps
- Masses, liturgies and assemblies
- Japan Study Tour – Families involved will receive separate communication about this.
If you or your child are unwell
- This news.com.au article includes key information about identifying the symptoms of COVID-19.
- Students and staff must not attend school if they or someone in their household is being tested for or has been diagnosed with COVID-19. Please alert the school immediately in this situation.
- If you are uncomfortable sending your child to school at any time, please notify your son’s classroom / home group teacher as soon as possible so we can ensure they are well-equipped to work from home.
If there is a confirmed case at Blackfriars
- If we are advised by authorities of a confirmed case of COVID-19, or of the necessity for a forced closure, the school will be required to close allowing for a bio clean of the campus.
- Our process in the case of school closure will be as follows:
- School closure SEQTA Direqt Message and SMS sent to parents / caregivers.
- School will continue to operate as normal until the end of the day.
- OSHC will operate as normal that day.
- Families wishing to collect their child before the end of the day are free to do so, ensuring that they are signed out at the school Administration, Student Services Office or ELC.
- Students who use the Blackfriars school buses will have the regular services provided departing at 3.25pm.
- During school closure it is imperative that students remain at home and continue to practise social distancing and personal hygiene procedures.
Continuity of learning
- Blackfriars is continuing to focus on our core business of classroom-based learning and teaching, with online accessibility to ensure equitable and quality learning for all students.
- Our Learning Management System (including SEQTA (Year 4 to Year 12), Seesaw (ELC to Year 3) and OneNote Class Notebook) is well-equipped for remote access and is being regularly reviewed and updated by our ICT team.
- The eSafety Commissioner has provided an online safety kit specific for parents and carers who may need to support their children through remote learning at some point.
- Our Library website has a comprehensive range of digital learning resources, as well as useful websites for student research, and general resources for parents to keep their kids busy and engaged with learning from home.
- Click here to read a message for teachers and parents from Professor Martin Westwell, Chief Executive, SACE Board of SA.
- Please view video messages below from Professor Martin Westwall to students and parents.
Supporting mental health and wellbeing during COVID-19
- Blackfriars offers free onsite counselling and psychology services to all students. Referrals to the Counselling Team may be made by the student (self-referral), a parent or caregiver, or a teacher. Referral forms are available via SEQTA.
- ChildMind is a US organisation, but their tips for supporting teenagers to navigate coronavirus are just as relevant to us in Adelaide.
- If you or your children are having trouble articulating how they are feeling, you might like to try using this feelings wheel to label and understand different emotions.
- This Beyond Blue fact sheet has great tips for children and adults alike, as well as links to other reputable resources about COVID-19.
- This headspace page is specifically for young people feeling stressed about COVID-19, and provides clear advice about what to do if you’re feeling overwhelmed or need extra support.
- Youth Beyond Blue has general resources for supporting young people’s mental health and wellbeing (not specifically about COVID-19).
- This article from TALi Health also has some extra tips for working through difficult feelings with your children.
How to talk about COVID-19 with your children
- Lifeline provides a free, 24-hour phone line for crisis support: call 13 11 14 or use their web chat function.
- Kids Helpline offers free, confidential phone and online counselling for children and young people aged 5-25.
- Beyond Blue also offers phone and online options for those suffering from anxiety or depression.
General information resources
- ABC’s Coronacast offers short daily episodes summarising the latest advice and developments regarding COVID-19, in a simple and straightforward manner.
- This news.com.au article shares key information about COVID-19 in graphic form, which may be easier to understand and process for many.
- Australian Government and SA Health websites have the latest official guidelines and information about what steps should be taken by the public.
- A National Coronavirus Health Information Line has been established, and can be contacted on 1800 020 080.
Key school contacts
If you have any questions, or are directly affected by COVID-19, please contact:
- David Ruggiero – Deputy Principal (Secondary)
- Frank Ali – Head of Primary
- Karen McEntee – ELC Director
- Rita Quaini – OSHC Director
As always, Blackfriars staff are here to support your children and families.
Please stay informed with updates via SEQTA, the school website and our social media channels.