The purpose of this guidance is to provide advice from the Victorian Chief Health Officer in relation to students with medical conditions and students living with medically vulnerable members of the community.
As Victoria’s Chief Health Officer and as a member of the Australian Health Protection Principal Committee, and with the health, wellbeing and safety of students and staff front of mind, I fully endorse a return to on-site schooling for all Victorian schools. Health and safety advice for return to on-site schooling in the context of coronavirus (COVID-19) is available to support schools to continue to provide safe teaching and learning environments for staff and students.
The available evidence largely indicates that transmission of coronavirus (COVID-19) between children in the school environment at the current time is very low and that the virus is generally milder in children than in adults.
Caution continues to be advised for students with complex medical needs. It is recommended that parents/carers of students with complex medical needs, seek advice from the student’s medical practitioner to support decision-making about whether on-site education is suitable. It is important, however, that clinical risk be weighed against the consequences of a student missing the opportunity for face-to-face learning, particularly in the context of very low rates of coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission in Victoria.
An individual assessment is always recommended and decisions regarding school attendance should be informed by the nature of a child or young person’s condition, its severity and intensity of required treatment. The presence of common conditions of childhood, such as asthma, epilepsy or Type 1 diabetes, in most cases should not preclude a student from attending face-to-face learning.
In keeping with national expert public health advice, people with a medically-diagnosed compromised immune system may be at increased risk of the complications of coronavirus (COVID-19). Such an occurrence is rare in children. As a result it should be an uncommon event for a child to be determined by a medical practitioner to be unable to return to school due to an ongoing medical reason raising concerns about coronavirus (COVID-19), outside of an acute illness.
The risk of transmission in the school environment at the current time is very low. It is not recommended that students who live with someone who is at risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) to remain at home at this time. Schools have put in place a range of measures to further reduce the risk of coronavirus (COVID-19) transmission and have clear protocols in place to quickly respond and manage a case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in a school.
Adj Clin Prof Brett Sutton
Victorian Chief Health Officer
The Department of Education and Training has developed a fact sheet that outlines the responsibilities of the school and of parents and carers and the circumstances where remote and flexible learning programs will continue in schools.
Schools should ensure students with additional medical needs have an up to date Student Health Support Plan and accompanying condition specific health management plan (such as an Asthma Care Plan), based on:
Putting a Resilient Mindset into Action
RESILIENCE:THRIVING AMID ADVERSITY
Joy, Collected Over Time, Fuels Resilience.
Have you ever had times in your life when things just seem to get on top of you? Stressful events or situations are just too much to bare. This is when it helps to be resilient. But what does resilient mean? Resilience is the ability to bounce back from adversity. Resilience was once perceived as a rare and special character trait of heroes. We now understand that it’s a form of ‘ordinary magic’ that allows us to cope with the ups and downs of life. The inner strength and spirit that encompasses resilience is best illustrated by Pip, a courageous puppy who dreams of becoming a guide dog for the visually impaired. Pip is the youngest of the students in his class and always encounters complications in doing any exercise, but thanks to his great willpower he manages to get to the final exam.
Click on the link and enjoy “Pip.”
Earlier this year our staff were involved in Professional Development around Indigenous culture and understanding. Our KESO support officer gave staff an insight into the beautiful culture, art and history of our Aboriginal and Torres Straight Islander First Nation Peoples. We were given an opportunity to purchase an artwork for our school and chose this painting from the artist below.
Title - Women's Ceremony
Stunning colours and heavy dot work are used to depict traditional sacred women's sites in the Kintore area, which is located 250km west of Debra’s birthplace. The concentric circles commonly seen in her paintings represent the important ceremonial sites for Debra and her ancestors and the connecting lines between the circles are the ancient travelling paths that lead to these sites.
Debra Young Nakamarra
Debra began painting in the mid 1980s, along with her sisters Katherine Marshall Nakamarra and Lorraine Yungut Nakamarra. Painting with their mother, the highly-acclaimed Pintupi artist Walangkura Napanangka, the three sisters have inherited her stories and iconography for representing them.
Debra’s father, Johnny Yungut Tjupurrula, was also a successful Papunya Tula artist, as were her mother's sister, Pirrmangka Napanangka, and her grandmother, Inyuwa Nampitjinpa.
Similarities can be seen between Debra's work and the bold style of the Papunya Tula movement. This is especially evident in the way the paint is applied in thick, joined dots. Debra has developed her own palette of colours and her personal way of representing the iconography to depict the traditional sacred women's sites in the Kintore area, located 250km west of her birthplace.
Debra is most certainly a talented artist; her works are bold, culturally significant and create a sense of powerful energy.