Formals and Graduations to go ahead, with COVID-19 safe solutions in place

Year Twelve school formals will be celebrated a little differently this year, due to NSW Health COVID-19 restrictions. Photo: Emma Darbin.


NSW Health has released COVID-19 safety plans that allow Year Twelve school formals and graduations to go ahead from Thursday, 12 November, following the completion of HSC exams.

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Schools are also now able to hold COVID-19 safe Year Twelve and Year Six graduation assemblies to recognise the completion of school.

Year Twelve formals organised by schools may be held on the school site or at an external site, with attendance limited to Year Twelve students and supervising staff only.

Schools can allow the attendance of external visitors such as partners, DJs and photographers.

Schools will have the option to host graduation ceremonies from 12 November within the school, and must comply with the four square metre rule, which will guide the total number of people permitted to attend the event.

The Department of Education has stated that parents or other family members are welcome to participate where the school has capacity under the four square metre rule.

To promote physical distancing, markers will be placed on the floor in areas where people are asked to queue, such as students waiting to come onstage to receive their certificate, and Year Twelve students are encouraged to bring their own pens to sign each other’s yearbooks.

Primary schools are also able to plan for Year Six formals or farewells.

All school formals are not allowed to have self-serve or buffet style food service, or singing and chanting during the event.

The only COVID-safe singing permitted will be for solo singers at the event who are distanced at least five metres away from other attendees.

NSW Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell urged students to follow the direction of their schools and formal venues, and respect public health orders at all end of year events.

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