We are working with NSW Health and NSW Department of Education to follow and understand the extent to which SARS-CoV-2 is transmitted within school and early childhood education and care (ECEC) settings. We know school and childcare play a critical role in childhood and adolescent learning, social and emotional growth and extended closure can be harmful to their mental health and development.

In alliance with NSW public health units, we have conducted enhanced investigation of COVID-19 cases and contact testing. Our team has followed and continue to follow over 50 educational settings and have found the overall risk of transmission within these settings to be low in NSW. In the few settings where outbreaks have occurred, we are trying to understand the reasons or drivers for these outbreaks.

This study is funded by NSW Health. NCIRS staff members involved in this investigation include NCIRS Director Professor Kristine Macartney, Associate Professor Nicholas Wood, Dr Archana Koirala, Dr Lucy Deng, Dr Helen Quinn, Noni Winkler, Dr Rama Kandasamy, Evangeline Gardiner and Ajay Jadhav in addition to the NSW School Study Team.

Read COVID-19: Transmission in educational settings in NSW Terms 1 and 2 reports here

Last updated November 2020