COVID-19 INFO

Hillcrest Christian College continues to monitor the ongoing local and worldwide situation of the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). 

We would like to reassure parents that the health and wellbeing of our students, staff, families and community is our number one priority.

All actions and recommendations taken by the college are in consultation with the Queensland Government to ensure we are well informed and prepared.

Hillcrest is preparing for a range of scenarios. We have outlined below some recommendations to families. We will continue to keep this page updated as this situation continues to evolve.

For resources in Simplified or Traditional Chinese please refer to:

新型冠状病毒 (COVID-19) 您需要了解什么 (Coronavirus: what you need to know)

THE HILLCREST CHRISTIAN COLLEGE APP: 

Links to updated information will be featured in the NOTICES icon. If you do not have the College App you can download it by visiting the following links. 

Download the Android version of the App from Google Play

Download the iPhone/iPad App from the iTunes Store

Q&A

The following information is sources from the World Health Organisation, Australian Government Department of Health and Queensland Health.

(Last Updated 16 March 2020)

Will Hillcrest need to close?

You may have heard of a number of schools that have closed in recent days as a result of students being tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). 

Hillcrest Christian College has been preparing for a range of scenarios, and planning is in place should the Queensland Government direct schools to close.

As we continue to be prepared for a range of scenarios, we would encourage students to ensure they take their laptop (device) and charger home each day, and relevant texts (not available online) in case of a school closure.

What will happen if Hillcrest has to close?

Parents and students will not be permitted to access the campus or lockers if the school is closed.

Teachers will deliver lessons via an online platform (with details to be advised at the time of closure). Outside School Hours Care will be closed (including Before/After School Care, Vacation Care).

All outside providers for sport and music tuition will be cancelled (e.g. Sparks, Choral, basketball, Musical Rehearsals etc).

The college intends to provide a range of services online.

I have come into close contact with someone who has coronavirus

If you have been in close contact with someone who already has coronavirus you need to contact the College immediately.

You and the people you have had close contact with need to self-quarantine for 14 days.

If you begin to feel unwell and develop a fever or shortness of breath, a cough or a respiratory illness during your period of self-quarantine you should seek immediate medical attention. 

Call ahead to your GP or emergency department and mention you’ve been in contact with someone with novel coronavirus infection before you arrive.


If you experience any other symptoms or illness, perhaps due to chronic disease, during your period of self-quarantine you should also seek immediate medical attention. Call ahead to your GP or emergency department and mention you’ve been in contact with someone with novel coronavirus infection before you arrive.

When should I self-quarantine myself or my family?

If you have been overseas in the last 14 days, been in close contact with someone who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 or are feeling unwell, see a doctor immediately and will need to quarantine by self-isolation.

What does self-quarantine mean?

Do not go to public places, such as work, school, shopping centres, childcare or university. If possible, ask other people to get food and other necessities for you and leave them at your front door.

Only people who usually live with you should be in your home. Do not let in visitors. 

You do not need to wear a mask in your home. If you need to leave home to seek medical attention, wear a surgical mask (if you have one) to protect others. To find out more, read our home isolation information sheet.

If you experience any other symptom during your period of self-quarantine you should also seek immediate medical attention. Call ahead to your GP or emergency department and mention your travel history before you arrive.

Self-isolation - when and why

Students who have left, or transited through any of the countries in the last 14 days must continue to self-isolate themselves prior to returning to the college. Self-isolation means staying at home and not accepting visitors.

Please note our International students and host families adhered to this requirement prior to returning to Hillcrest Christian College at the start of the year.

If your child has been in close contact with a confirmed case of coronavirus in the last 14 days, they must also isolate themselves for 14 days after the date of last contact with the confirmed case.

These are important preventative measures that have been put in place in the interests of public health. Anyone who has completed the self-quarantine period of 14 days and shows no symptoms of illness is then permitted to return to the college.

​What is coronavirus (COVID-19)?

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses which may cause illness in animals or humans.  In humans, several coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory infections ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). The most recently discovered coronavirus causes coronavirus disease COVID-19.

However novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new strain of coronavirus that has not been previously identified in humans.

People of all ages can be affected by the novel coronavirus. However, elderly people, and people with pre-existing medical conditions (such as asthma, diabetes, heart disease) appear to be more vulnerable to becoming severely ill.


Resources for family discussions

With the increasing presence of articles in the media, some students are asking questions around what this means to them. To assist family conversations there are two resources which may help discuss COVID-19 with children. 

This video from Dr Michael Carr-Gregg, a leading Australian child psychologist, outlines how parents and guardians can talk to their children about the virus. 

Click the image or here to view the SchoolTV.me resource from Dr Michael Carr-Gregg.

The link below is from the ABC, Behind The News (BTN) and provides the facts in an easy to understand way. The BTN special report also includes questions from school children.

Click on the image above to be redirected to the BTN website or click here.

What are the symptoms of novel coronavirus?

It depends on the virus, but common signs include:

  1. fever
  2. a cough
  3. sore throat
  4. fatigue
  5. shortness of breath
If you have serious symptoms such as difficulty breathing, call 000 for urgent medical help.

If a member of your immediate family has undertaken a COVID-19 test please notify your relevant Head of Community immediately and we ask that all members of your family do not come on campus. Once the test result has been received please notify the Head of Community as soon as possible. 

How do students and the community protect themselves?

To protect yourself and others from infection practice good hand and respiratory hygiene including:

  1. Cleaning hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rubs
  2. Covering your nose and mouth with a tissue or flexed elbow when coughing or sneezing
  3. Avoiding contact with anyone who has symptoms such as fever, a cough, sore throat, fatigue, and shortness of breath
  4. Staying home if you are unwell.

You should also try and stay at least 1.5 metres away from people coughing or sneezing.

Student Guidelines include
  1. Cleaning hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rubs before and after breaks
  2. Cleaning hands with alcohol-based hand rubs when entering gathering areas such as the Library
  3. Reduce physical contact to a minimum such as refraining from hand shakes and high fives
  4. All students need to have their own water bottles and refill them prior to any sporting practice or fixture. Students are NOT to share drink bottles with any other student.
  5. No hand shaking hugging or other physical contact amongst community members

To help personal hygiene and to increase the focus on hand washing please find some resources below.

PARENT RESOURCE

A brief history on the science and history of hand washing and why it is important. To view the video please click on the image below orCLICK HERE.

How could I become infected with novel coronavirus?

Novel coronavirus is transmitted from person to person, usually when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

If you begin to exhibit any symptoms such as fever, a cough, sore throat, fatigue, and breathing difficulties, then you should contact your Doctor or call 13HEALTH (13 43 25 84) 

Please contact the College ASAP so we can be aware and support you and the College community.

If a member of your immediate family has undertaken a COVID-19 test, please notify the Head of Community immediately and that all members of your family do not come on campus. Once the test result has been received contact the Head of Community.

Click here to view Hillcrest's Contact Page.


You can also help your body fight any virus by maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Refer to the tab "Practical steps to boost your immunity" for more information.

Travelling throughout the upcoming school holidays

If your family is planning on travelling overseas during the upcoming school holidays, please contact your Head of Community immediately.

Click here to view Hillcrest's Contact Page for direct links to each Community.

or email: office@hillcrest.qld.edu.au

A reminder that if you are travelling internationally, you will be required to “self-isolate” for 14 days following your visit to the region (and therefore will not be permitted on campus).

We would also encourage parents to refer to the Smart Traveller website which will have the most up to date advice about travel as many countries are limiting international travel either into or out of each country.

"Regardless of your destination, age or health, if your overseas travel is not essential, consider carefully whether now is the right time."

The Smart Traveller website have issued this advice for two principal reasons:

  1. There may be a higher risk of contracting COVID-19 overseas. You may come in contact with more people than usual, including during long-haul flights and in crowded airports. Health care systems in some countries may come under strain and may not be as well-equipped as Australia’s or have the capacity to support foreigners. You may not have your normal support networks overseas.
  2. Overseas travel has become more complex and unpredictable. Many countries are introducing entry or movement restrictions. These are changing often and quickly. Your travel plans may be disrupted. You may be placed in quarantine or denied entry to some countries, and you may need to self-quarantine on return to Australia. Think about what this might mean for your health, and your family, work or study responsibilities.
Practical steps to boost your immunity

Everyone has a part to play in protecting themselves and those around them. Some of the practical steps that can be taken include:

Stay Hydrated
Eat healthy fresh fruit and vegetables
Rest and get a good nights sleep
Moderate Exercise
STAY CALM AND TRY NOT TO STRESS OR BE ANXIOUS

If we stop and think everyday (prior to coronavirus) we are inundated on a daily basis from all kinds of viruses. These are coming from our kids, coming from our colleagues, coming from surfaces that we touch throughout the day and our immunity is amazing at fighting them off each day.

“We already know that, for the vast majority of people that are already healthy, this is really more of an inconvenience to a lot of them than something that can be fatal or life-threatening,” said Dr. Caroline Sokol, an immunology researcher at Massachusetts General Hospital.

"What's even more crucial, Dr. Sokol says, is reducing stress, which can directly affect immune function."


Prayer, focusing on the facts and looking around at our blessings is a great way to reduce stress.

Prayer helps us find strength for today and hope for the future.

Our lives may change from week to week, but we remain committed to ensuring we will support one another through this COVID-19 situation. 

James 5:16, When a believing person prays, great things happen.

What is a pandemic?

You may have heard that the World Health Organisation has characterised novel coronavirus (COVID-19) a pandemic. A pandemic occurs when there are multiple epidemics of the same disease in communities across the world.

The most important thing we want you to know is that you should be aware of, and informed about COVID-19, but not alarmed.

Should I be wearing a face mask?

Based on current advice, only people who have contracted the virus, are unwell and have access to a face mask should use it. This is to reduce the risk of transmitting the virus to others.

For anyone else who does not have symptoms, a face mask is not necessary.

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