12 March 2020

Update regarding coronavirus (COVID-19)

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

As you are likely aware, cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) have now been identified in New Zealand as the virus continues to travel the globe.

The New Zealand government is preparing plans to protect the country now that the virus has been declared a global pandemic and our College has utilised the resources provided by both the Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health to develop our own emergency management plan.

It is interesting that research published by the World Health Organisation notes that children and young people under 18 account for only 2.4% of reported cases of COVID-19 globally. This means we are unlikely to see widespread cases in schools in New Zealand.

The Ministry of Health’s current advice is that with continued vigilance, the chance of widespread community outbreak is expected to remain low.

However, to achieve this, we all have a role to play in minimising the spread of COVID-19 and the best preventative steps we can take are:

  • Washing our hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and drying them thoroughly.
  • Avoiding touching our eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoiding sharing anything that has come in contact with saliva in either our living, working or social environments.
  • Staying at home if we are sick and seeking medical attention.
  • Covering any cough or sneeze with a tissue, then disposing of the tissue.
  • Having adequate sleep and eating well-balanced meals to ensure a healthy immune system.

It is also important that we care and support all members of our community, especially if some are ultimately impacted by COVID-19 in some way.

The Ministry of Health website at www.health.govt.nz is the best source of information for New Zealand and they update this information regularly.

Ngā mihi

Mike Savali