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‘There will be outbreaks’ experts say as dates change again

She said she hoped schools would not have to close, but that the government would follow health advice.

“We are working on some nationally aligned guidance. I know Dr Gerrard, through the Australian Health Protection Main Committee, is working on how best to manage and contain this.

Queensland Minister Grace Grace. credit:Matt Dennin

“There are a lot of ways we can do this – we are looking forward to finalizing these guidelines when school returns and we will be following them, and hopefully we can have a consistent approach nationwide.”

Dr. Gerrard said that while outbreaks in schools are hard to predict, most children will only develop a mild illness, similar to the typical respiratory illness any child can have.

The authorities were also working through a process to ensure that all teachers met vaccination requirements.

Ms Grace said that if teachers refuse to vaccinate, the state has “a large number of relief teachers” to cover.

“If they do not fulfill this mandate by a certain date, they will be disqualified without pay to show the reason [as to] Why should they continue with the Ministry of Education, she said.

More than 95 percent of state school staff have submitted their vaccination status, with more than 98 percent indicating they have been fully vaccinated or will be in the coming days.

Meanwhile, Ms. Grace said there was a panel of relevant stakeholders, including the non-governmental sector, to assess issues including air conditioning ventilation in schools.

She said Queensland was in the unique position of having 96 per cent of schools fully air-conditioned and most were able to circulate fresh air through the buildings.


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