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Classes and COVID-safety: what you need to know

Rules for attending class in the time of COVID-19
Students will soon be welcomed back on our campuses, but the world is a little bit different than when we left. If you’re returning for in-person classes in Semester 2, there are some important rules to remember to keep our community COVID-safe.

Bring your student card to tap in

When you’re packing your bag for your first day of class, don’t forget to pack your student card. As a safety precaution, you’ll need to tap in individually when you enter a building. You will also need your card to access buildings and services, like the Library.  If you don't have one yet, find out how to get your student card.

Socially close but physically distanced

We know you’ll be excited to catch up with your uni friends, but it’s as important as ever to make sure you’re greeting each other from a distance of 1.5 metres. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make new friends and check in with each other, just make sure you’re doing it safely. Unfortunately, that means avoiding handshakes, hugs, high fives, low fives or any other form of greeting with close physical contact.  

Remember to protect your personal space. If someone is getting a little too close to your personal bubble, politely let them know. And if someone asks you to give them a little extra space, be respectful. Remember, it’s not you, it’s the pandemic.

Space out in the classroom

If you’re waiting to enter a classroom, stand back and give other students plenty of room to exit before you enter. Don’t crowd doorways and take your time to find a seat. Class timetables have been arranged to accommodate physical distancing between students. This means that you’ll need to space out in the classroom, where possible – so if you’re going to sit with your besties, keep a little space between you. Don’t move furniture around in the classroom or move chairs closer together and if you find chairs have been left a little too close by a previous class, space them back out. 

Don’t forget to wipe

Sanitising wipes will be available on wall mounts outside of each classroom. Before you enter, take a wipe to sanitise your desk before you use it, so you know it’s clean and ready to go. 

Wash. Your. Hands.

Washing hands has always been basic hygiene everyone should follow. Now, though, it’s more important than ever to do it, and do it properly. Soap, water, 20 seconds and a thorough scrub is needed regularly to keep your hands fresh and COVID-free. There’s also hand sanitiser all over campus – so use that too.

If you don’t feel 100%, you should 100% stay home

If you have a tickle in your throat, a case of the sniffles or a pesky headache, it’s essential that you stay home and get tested for COVID-19. The same rule applies if you’ve been told to self-isolate. Even if you feel fine, you may be asymptomatic, so it’s really important that you get tested and stay home until you’re given the all-clear. You won’t be penalised for missing class if you’re unwell or are required to self-isolate. Remember that it’s about keeping the community safe.

Travelling to campus

Many of us haven’t commuted in months, so making the trip to campus may feel a little unfamiliar. If you live close enough, walking or cycling to campus are both great ways to exercise and maintain physical distance from others. If you’re catching a bus or train, you will need to follow NSW Health guidelines, such as wearing a mask, sitting or standing in allocated spaces, and catching transport in off-peak times if you can. Here’s where to go for information.

What about face masks?

You're welcome to wear a mask on campus as an additional measure if you wish. You will not be asked to remove a mask, unless it is necessary to meet a safety or compliance requirement of a specialty facility.

It's important to ensure your mask is fitted correctly and to follow safe procedures for putting on and taking off masks. Used masks can be disposed of in normal bins around campus. NSW Health have provided detailed guidance on how to wear a mask.

Stay informed

If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the last few months, it’s that things can change really quickly. Throughout semester, we may need to be in touch due for any number of reasons, like contract tracing, a confirmed case in the area, or changes to government advice that may impact your studies. It’s essential that you regularly checking your University email address, our website and our social media accounts to stay up to date. 

20 August 2020

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