Executive Director’s Update to Principals #101: COVID Update - 18 Oct 2021
God of all creation:
we are quick to find someone to blame,
even when no one deserves it.
We look for ways to take care of our own, while ignoring those highest at risk.
We manage to indulge in just enough empathy to make ourselves feel a lot better,
but we rarely choose to sacrifice
the idols we truly value.
Scapegoated saviour, as we muddle along
in this mess of being human,
allow us to see ourselves in the ones
we accuse or neglect,
and your grace in the place of judgement.
~The Corrymeela Community
Today’s Victorian press conference
In today’s Victorian press conference, it was announced that changes to protocols for non-household primary close contacts who are fully vaccinated will come into effect on Thursday 21 October at 11.59pm. Further details are available in the Minister for Health’s media release.
Return to on-site learning update
Because of record vaccination rates, students in regional Victoria will return on-site full time from this Friday 22 October.
The roadmap for schools in metropolitan Melbourne has also changed and brought forward the current staggered days for each year level.
Schools in the Mildura Rural City Council LGA
While the Mildura Rural City Council LGA remains in lockdown, schools in this LGA must follow the same return to school arrangements as Melbourne:
- Years 5 and 6 students will return on Friday 22 October and will be on-site part time for the following week. They will learn remotely Monday 25 to Wednesday 27 October before returning on-site on Thursday 28 and Friday 29 October.
- Year 7 students will return on Friday 22 October and remain on-site full time.
- Year 10 students will return on Friday 22 October and will be on-site part time for the following week. They will learn remotely Monday 25 to Wednesday 27 October before returning onsite on Thursday 28 and Friday 29 October.
- Year 11 students will return on Friday 22 October and remain on-site full time.
- Year levels Prep, 1, 2, 3, 4, 8 and 9 will stay on the current schedule.
Managing unvaccinated staff attending school sites
Principals are reminded that if an unvaccinated staff member arrives at a school site from 18 October 2021, they should be directed to leave the school immediately.
A direction to leave will be lawful and reasonable and, if the employee does not leave or becomes aggressive, the school should contact their Education Consultant. If the situation escalates, contact the police.
Reporting on vaccination status
The vaccination reporting function in the Personnel Record System (PRS) is now operational. A quick video has been created by CECV that details the steps needed to run this report in PRS.
Equivalent reporting for ICON schools using eHR also exists. The instructions required to run this report are available in the Quick Reference Guide – see steps 15 to 17, which we shared on Wednesday.
Template for responding to correspondence regarding vaccination concern
We are aware that some schools may have received correspondence regarding the COVID-19 mandatory vaccination requirements, making claims regarding their safety, legality, and consistency with our faith.
We have prepared a template letter (Word document) with CECV to assist you with responding to this correspondence.
School vaccination statistics survey
The DOBCEL Board and CECV require a snapshot of the vaccination status of its staff, so DOBCEL principals are asked to complete this short survey by COB Wednesday 20 October.
Response to COVID-19 Risk Assessment request
Last week a few Principals received requests from individual staff members seeking a copy of the schools COVID-19 Risk Assessment for the school/classroom. In responding to these requests, we have taken the approach that all the necessary risk mitigation strategies are adequately captured in the School COVID-19 Safety Plan. The plan is based on the most current advice from the Chief Health Officer and is contextualised to the local school setting and their associated risks.
To assist with responding to these requests, a template letter (Word document) has been prepared and can be provided to staff along with the current version of the school COVID-19 Safety Plan (please ensure the plan is updated as per the advice sent in Executive Director’s Update to Principals #100: COVID Update - 15 Oct 2021).
For further information on responding to request please contact Michael Trainor, Manager: HR on 5337 7109.
Face masks for younger children
A nominal supply of face masks designed for younger children is now available by request. Contact Simon O’Brien for further information.
Next COVID Update
We will continue to monitor the situation and advise principals of any updates. Please liaise with the COVID Support team (see left hand column) or your Education Consultant with any questions or concerns.
Stay safe and continue to look after each other…