Welcome back, the RATs are coming:
You will have seen today’s announcement by the Chief Minister that ACT schools will start the new school year with face-to-face learning but without access to Rapid Antigen Testing.
The AEU understands the need for certainty around the return to school but that certainty also extends to having a health monitoring regime in place and detailed plans for managing the likelihood of high levels of staff and student absences.
The AEU demanded sufficient RATs be provided prior to the commencement of on-campus learning. The RATs have now been secured but not within the necessary timeframe.
Education Minister Yvette Berry confirmed today that the ACT Government will be providing two RATs per week to every school staff member and all students from preschool to year 12 for the first four weeks of term. These will be provided by the end of week one.
The AEU seeks a return to school where disruption is minimised. The last thing we want is for our members to be in and out of face-to-face and remote learning. For this reason, we have been consulting with the Education Directorate to have your questions answered and to be assured that plans are in place that allow our schools to be operational without burdening staff.
To date we are not satisfied with the responses we have received. We anticipate being able to provide significantly improved details before the week is out.
While this is not the sort of calm, measured start to a new school year we are all hoping for, we will always advocate for our members in the strongest possible ways. Read our media release here.