Schools asked to protect students from an unwelcome visitor

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New Zealand has been praised for its Covid-19 management (Getty Images)

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Wellington, January 24, 2022

As Omicron spreads in the community and as schools remain open at the Red Setting under the Traffic Lights System of the Covid-19 Protection Network, Education New Zealand has recommended schools to ensure the wellbeing of students.

The following guidelines have been taken from Education New Zealand website.

If students have a cold, flu or Covid-19 symptoms, call Healthline, parents or a doctor..

Principals, teachers and staff should observe children on arrival, checking for symptoms. Those presenting as unwell should be asked to go home or arrange for parents or caregivers to pick them up. Principals at state and state-integrated schools have the authority to preclude a student from attending if they believe on reasonable grounds that they may have a communicable disease under section 77 of the Education and Training Act 2020.

Private schools are able to ask someone presenting as ill to not attend.

Covid-19 symptoms

Symptoms can include one or more of the following: (a) a new or worsening cough (b) sneezing and runny nose (c) a fever (d) temporary loss of smell or altered sense of taste (e) sore throat (f)

shortness of breath

Less common symptoms may include diarrhoea, headache, muscle pain or body aches, nausea

Vomiting, malaise (a general feeling of discomfort, illness or unease), chest pain, abdominal pain, joint pain, confusion or irritability.

These less common symptoms occur with one or more of the common symptoms.

These symptoms do not necessarily mean that the person has Covid-19. The symptoms are like other illnesses that are common, such as colds and flu.

Shortness of breath is a sign of possible pneumonia and requires immediate medical attention.

Please call Healthline on 0800-3585453.

Delayed symptoms

Symptoms tend to arise around two to five days after a person is infected, but symptoms can take up to 14 days to show. A person with Covid-19 can pass it on to others from up to two days before showing symptoms. Sometimes people may have Covid-19, but not have any symptoms.

If you have any symptoms, stay home. Do not go to work or school. Do not socialise. Call your doctor or Healthline and check if you should get tested. Wash your hands often. Sneeze and cough into your elbow and disinfect shared surfaces often.

If health authorities tell you to self-isolate, do so immediately. If you are waiting for test results you will also need to self-isolate.

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