COVID-19 UPDATE: 17 February 2021

This afternoon, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced that our current Alert Level 3 lockdown will cease as of midnight tonight and we will transition to Alert Level 2. This is great news as it allows us to transition back to campus.

Under Alert Level 2, our campus is able to re-open, albeit under strict protocols. These protocols include:

  • Most significantly, stay home if you are sick and seek medical advice 

  • Scan in each day through the COVID-19 app or via our manual contact tracing register

  • Maintain good hand hygiene and cough/sneeze into your elbow

  • Mask wearing is mandatory on public transport and encouraged on campus. All staff and students are particularly encouraged to wear masks when in areas of close proximity such as our studios

  • All staff and students at high risk of COVID-19 should stay at home

  • Physical distancing of 1 metre should be maintained at all times

  • Classes are held both on campus and online to ensure sufficient space on campus to maintain physical distancing

  • Studios and computer labs are fully open, 8am-10pm 

  • Film equipment can be booked and taken off campus as per normal.

These Alert Level 2 protocols are attached.


There are 2 items I would particularly like to draw your attention to:

  1. The need for physical distancing

Under Alert Level 2, physical distancing of 1 metre should be maintained whilst on campus. In order to achieve that some teaching will need to continue online, while other classes may be split into smaller groups while on campus. This means there may be a slight adjustment to your timetables so that those on campus are able to spread out and ensure we are meeting physical distancing requirements. As always, please keep a close eye on your Slack channel, as well as your Axis timetable, where the latest information will be posted. 

  1. Staff and students who are at high risk of COVID-19

People with pre-existing medical conditions that place them at high risk of COVID-19 should stay home under Alert Level 2. If this is the case, please contact me directly to be placed on our vulnerable persons register. A medical certificate may be required. You will still be able and expected to attend class, however provision can be made, including one-on-one catch ups, where needed.


When will our campus reopen?

On Thursday 18 Feb, our campus will remain closed to students, in order to allow us time to transition the campus with the required physical distancing, as well as readjust the timetable as needed. Only staff will be able to access the campus during normal working hours. 

From Friday 19 Feb, our studios and computer labs will reopen under usual opening hours, 8am-10pm including the weekend. Students are welcome to start booking studios or equipment as needed.

From Monday 22 Feb, all classrooms, studios and computer labs will reopen and classes can return to campus. However, as noted above, some classes may continue online to ensure there’s enough room for those on campus to spread out and maintain physical distancing. Please keep an eye on your Slack channels for information about whether your class is on campus or on line.

Finally, I would like to acknowledge the swiftness by which staff and students responded to this snap lockdown. We transitioned seamlessly online with minimal issues. I was so impressed with the positive and compassionate attitude that you all showed. Maintaining the strength of community and taking care of yourself and each other is what will help us through these tough times. He waka eke noa – we are all in this together. 

The next review and announcement regarding Alert Levels will be made on Monday 22 February. Should the situation change at that or any point, I will be back in touch. In the meantime, and as always, please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Ngā mihi nui,


Dr Suzette Major

Campus Director, SAE AUCKLAND