Like you, we have been closely watching as the COVID-19 situation unfolds across our region.
Unfortunately, the situation has not improved, with the NSW Premier extending the current restrictions and stay-at-home orders for Greater Sydney to 11:59pm, Friday 30 July 2021.
While we plan to return to campus when NSW Health advice allows, we wanted to provide you with some certainty as we head into the start of Session 2 (Spring). To protect our university community, and give certainty in relation to teaching and learning, we have decided to move most classes online for the first four weeks of Session 2 – that is, to the end of Week 4 (20 August 2021). The remainder of Trimester 2 will also be online.
A decision about class delivery beyond 20 August 2021 will be communicated in early August, allowing students sufficient time to plan before Session 2 census date (31 August 2021).
Our decision to move classes online past the extended lockdown date end is based on the fact that beyond 30 July 2021, it is unclear how long restrictions will remain in place or how they will change over time. What is clear is that the road out of lockdown from this outbreak will take some time, and we want to allow sufficient time for staff and students to plan ahead.
What Session 2 will look like:
- Most classes in Weeks 1 – 4 will be delivered online
- All classes, with the exemption of some practical components (and clinical placements conducted off campus), will be transitioned online. If your class has an exemption and is required to run face to face, you will be contacted by your Faculty via SOLS with further information regarding this
- Students who are, or will be attending a clinical placement are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated
- Bega, Batemans Bay, Southern Highlands and Shoalhaven campuses remain open and accessible for students, with COVID-Safe plans in place
- Wollongong campus library will remain open and accessible for students who may require quiet study spaces and computer or internet access
- The following COVID-Safe rules apply, which includes wearing a face mask in indoor settings including classrooms while visiting the Wollongong, South Western Sydney and Innovation campuses (pending health restrictions at that time)
- Please continue to check this list of case locations, exposure venues and public transport routes. If you attended a venue during the times and dates listed, you must immediately follow the health advice listed against the relevant venue and do not visit a UOW campus for any reason.
- Students that need to travel into the Greater Sydney area (which includes Wollongong) to work or learn should seek advice from NSW Health on whether they are required to follow stay-at-home rules when returning to their Local Government Area (LGA).
- For offshore students unable to travel to Australia due to international travel restrictions, online delivery will continue to be offered, where possible.
To ensure you continue to progress in your studies, you should enrol in subjects according to the study sequence that you need to complete your degree.
New testing requirements
From Friday 16 July, the following new testing requirements coming into place:
- If you live in or are staying in the Fairfield Local Government Area (LGA) but work or learn outside this area, you must have a COVID-19 test once every 72 hours (3 days) in order to be allowed to enter a workplace or learning environment.
- If you live in or are staying in the Greater Sydney area you must have a COVID-19 test in the 7 days before working or learning if that destination is 50km or more outside of the Greater Sydney area.
- Campus Security or your supervisor may ask you to show proof of your residential address and evidence of a negative test.
Please visit the NSW Health website for specific information about these requirements.
Support is here
We know this is a challenging time for everyone, so please seek assistance through UOW’s Support Services, as you need it. Please also check in with each other and stay safe.
We know most of you miss being on campus and making the most of the social aspects of uni, and so will find this news disappointing. We are disappointed too, as we really miss seeing you on campus. Please know we continue to be committed to bringing more students back on campus safely and returning to a fully vibrant campus experience as soon as we can.
If you have questions or need support, contact Student Central via phone +61 2 4221 3927, email firstname.lastname@example.org or enquire online. Please note that due to high volume of enquiries at present, there will be delays in responding to enquiries. We will respond to each enquiry, so please only lodge an enquiry once. We appreciate your patience and understanding.