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COVID-19 - schools

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is causing considerable anxiety among QTU members. The QTU has been meeting with the department and government officials regularly to be briefed on developments and to work on solutions to emerging issues. These emerging issues include a range of concerns raised by members in circumstances such as remote communities, special education facilities and members with specific personal and family situations. All of these issues are the subject of ongoing discussions with the department as we work through emerging issues on a day-by-day basis. We will continue to advise members of the outcomes of these discussions as the situation progresses.

Jump to: QTU advice and information | DoE advice and information | Government directives and support documents  | Other government information

QTU advice and information:

FAQs for QTU members: COVID-19 (updated 7 May 2020)
In this edition: Workload Advisory Council | experienced senior teacher | EST2 and senior teacher |…
Contents: Vulnerable employees | Social distancing measures | Curriculum, assessment and reporting…
Government demands pay freeze for teachers and all public sector workers | Union position
Term 2 - staggered return to at-school attendance
In this issue : Making the best of a difficult situation | Change to term 2 operating guideines for…
When work is at home
In this issue: Issues arising from the Term 2 guidelines | Student attendance | Student roll marking…

Departmental (DoE) advice and information

More cleaning for Qld state schools (19 March)

19 March 2020: 

In response to our advocacy on behalf of members the Queensland Government has announced a major additional investment in cleaning time allocated to schools to ensure that during the COVID-19 crisis, all workplaces are cleaned in accordance with the recommendations of the Queensland Chief Medical Officer.

The QTU will continue to work with both the state government and the Department of Education to deliver other solutions to current and emerging member concerns.

The press release of the Minister for Education, Grace Grace follows:

More cleaning for Qld state schools

The Palaszczuk Government will increase the amount of cleaning in Queensland state schools in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Education Minister Grace Grace said schools would now be provided with additional resources to enable progressive cleaning across the course of the day.

“In line with advice from all of Australia’s Chief Health Officers, schools across the nation remain open,” Ms Grace said.

“But the role our hard-working cleaning staff play in helping to manage this public health issue is vital.

“The health, wellbeing and safety of our staff and students is our highest priority throughout this crisis.”

Minister Grace said late today the Department of Education ordered for extended and additional cleaning to commence in all schools.

“We are taking immediate action because there is nothing more important than keeping our students and staff safe,” she said.

“This additional cleaning will focus on the high touch points in schools and will happen throughout the day to ensure the risks of transmission are reduced.

“Schools should pay extra attention to health and hygiene measures including increasing the frequency of the cleaning of toilet facilities and providing additional soap and sanitiser.”

Minister Grace said soap and sanitiser products are essential for the maintenance of good staff and student hygiene.

“We will continue to work with suppliers to ensure schools have access to adequate cleaning and hygiene supplies such as soap, sanitizer, disinfectant.

“I sincerely thank all of our principals, teachers and staff for your attention to health and hygiene standards in our schools.

"But I particularly want to thank our cleaners for their dedication and commitment to the wellbeing of our students."

Schools are being asked to follow the below protocols when cleaning.

  1. use disposable microfibre cleaning cloths or, wash or change micro-fibre cloths daily and avoid re-using cloths across multiple surfaces
  2. use a general cleaner and follow with a disinfectant such as Q-sol, Peersol or S-Clean for precautionary cleans
  3. pay extra attention to high touch point surfaces such as door handles, light switches, desks, toilets, taps and sinks and use bleach/disinfectant solutions where appropriate for heightened cleanliness
  4. allow rooms to be exposed to sunlight and be well-ventilated.

QCAA advice/information for schools

The Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority (QCAA) is providing advice to and information to schools about the coronavirus.

15 March 2020 : The QCAA, like other government agencies, is preparing for a range of scenarios by reviewing and updating its business continuity and contingency plans. We will be meeting with the three schooling sectors this week to inform this planning. If required, we will implement alternative ways of working that support schools to deliver internal assessment and enable us to provide key services and processes, including confirmation.

 Link to QCAA  coronavirus information

Government directives and support documents

Pandemic Directive (Employment arrangements in the event of a health pandemic) (PDF) Implementation guide to the directive (PDF) Directive: School and Early Childhood Service Exclusion Direction
3 April 2020: Last night the current Queensland Public Health Directive was amended to exempt education and early childhood workers allowing them to travel to and from their home base over the Term 1 break.
Direction from Chief Health Officer in accordance with emergency powers arising from the declared public health emergency - Public Health Act 2005 (Qld) - Section 362B
Link to Government website

Other government information

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