Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk today announced Queensland state schools will go student-free next week “as the state’s education system continues to work to limit the spread of coronavirus”.
The Premier said schools will remain open until the end of term next Friday 3 April “to allow for the children of essential workers to remain at school and for teachers to prepare to move to remote learning from home”.
“While the advice from the Chief Health Officers was that schools could remain open, they need to start preparing for a potential closure in the coming weeks,” the Premier said today, Thursday 26 March.
“This will not be a normal school break,” she said.
“It is vital that parents take responsibility for their children during this time.
“Every Queenslander needs to do their part to limit the spread of coronavirus.”
The Premier said school would still be open for the children of frontline workers, that is workers who are required in their workplace.
“This is an unprecedented time in our history,” the Premier said.
“We will be asking frontline workers to go above and beyond their normal work situations to help us get through this.
“That’s not only frontline health professionals and police but people who undertake important work in our supply chain like stacking shelves in supermarkets.
“School will still be open for the children of these workers.”
Education Minister Grace Grace said teachers, teacher aides and staff would use the reduced attendance at schools to prepare for a potential move to students learning from home.
“We are planning for every eventuality when it comes to this global pandemic,” Ms Grace said.
“Currently we have two weeks’ worth of learning available to students to use at home and that will be constantly updated for as long as necessary.
“These student-free days will allow our hard-working teachers and teacher aides to prepare for that.
“Those staff members who have genuine health concerns will continue to have flexible working arrangements, such as working from home.”
Ms Grace said early childhood education centres and outside hours school care providers would continue as normal.
“I want to thank all of our educators and staff across Queensland for the hard work they have been putting in during this highly stressful time,” Ms Grace said.