BENDIGO schools are cancelling international school trips as the state government strengthens its precautions around COVID-19.
Victoria's Chief Health Officer has advised schools to cancel overseas school excursions until further notice. Only New Zealand and Canada are exempt from the ban.
Girton Grammar School confirmed it has cancelled an exchange trip to their sister school, Sainte Ursule in Lucon, France.
The school has also cancelled a trip to Malaysia for the Shell Eco-Marathon and the World Challenge trip to India.
World Challenge will contact parents directly about that trip, Girton Grammar told parents.
Japanese students and teachers who were meant to be spending time at Girton Grammar later this month have also chosen to stay in Japan.
Girton's acting head Emma O'Rielly told parents there was currently no need for changes to any of the domestic school camps.
"Every day, there are new developments concerning the coronavirus and we will continue to remain vigilant in monitoring the advice of relevant authorities," Dr O'Rielly said.
Bendigo Senior Secondary College principal Dale Pearce said there had been a group staff trip to China that the school had cancelled a few months ago.
Mr Pearce said the school had been planning a student trip to Greece and Italy for December, but the school was postponing any plans until it received further advice from the government.
"We have notified parents and students about what's going on," Mr Pearce said. "But this advice really doesn't apply to us for the foreseeable future."
Catherine McAuley College has also cancelled its Samoa Immersion Trip, which is an annual event for year 11 students.
"We have a duty of care to ensure the safety, health and wellbeing of our students and staff," principal Brian Turner said.
"This is our highest priority and we need to remain vigilant to any potential for increased risks and take precautionary measures to ensure the safest possible educational environment for all attending."
Marist College Bendigo principal Darren McGregor said the school had postponed a year 11 immersion trip to Timor Leste, which had been planned for the end of the school holidays.
Mr McGregor said Marist Schools Australia had also cancelled its national basketball carnival, which was scheduled to go ahead in Adelaide later this month.
"The situation is changing as the days unfold," Mr McGregor said.
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