Queensland, WA And SA Schools To Become Pupil-Free
Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia have announced schools will become pupil-free ahead of the holidays as the states move towards majority online learning.
South Australian schools will become pupil-free from April 4, while Queensland will move towards student-free schools from next Monday.
Western Australian schools will also become pupil-free from April 9. The state will then provide supervision but not teaching, with all students encouraged to access learning resources online.
All three states said on Thursday they will keep schools open for children with parents who are essential workers and for vulnerable children who need to be in a classroom environment.
"I know the community has had a lot of mixed reactions and we have listened," Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.
"I think it's very important that we do cater for our schools across the state to make sure that our workforce, that their students are able to go to school," she added.
Queensland Education Minister, Grace Grace, said essential workers included those who are keeping the country running by working in health care and supermarkets.
"This is unprecedented history, and unprecedented times," Grace said.
"That is why the student-free days next week will enable our teachers to prepare for learning at home and to be able to deliver the curriculum requirements of students when we work out exactly what is going to happen into the future."
The South Australian government announced schools and preschools will be pupil-before Good Friday. Teachers in the state will then transition towards online learning in term two.
While parents have been encouraged to keep children at home, schools are still open across NSW, ACT, NT and Tasmania.
Victorian schools are closed for the holidays until April 13.
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