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COVID-19 (Novel Coronavirus) Student Update 8

/ Coronavirus Student Updates
We remain cautiously optimistic about the slowing spread of COVID-19 in Victoria and continue to prioritise the health, safety, and wellbeing of our students and staff as we endeavour to provide the very best remote learning opportunities we can during this challenging time.

When will SWTAFE re-open to students?

At this point in time we have no indication of when ‘normal’ operations may resume at SWTAFE, and when we may be able to welcome students back on campus.

We appreciate that the differing and sometimes contradictory commentary between Federal and State Government may be a cause for confusion and frustration. So we’d like to clarify our current status and the decision making process behind any return of students.

Every TAFE across Victoria is guided by the Victorian Government and the Victorian Chief Health Officer in regard to students returning to TAFE for study. In the meantime, we continue to operate using remote learning under the Victorian government guideline of “if you can learn from home, you should learn from home”.

The Premier has advised all Victorians that the current restrictions remain in force and will not be reviewed until Monday 11 May. At this point TAFEs will be directed by the Department of Education and Training around any change to restrictions that may (or may not) allow more students to return to study on campus. Any updates or changes will be communicated to students at that time.

While the reduced spread of coronavirus in our region can easily lead to complacency, I encourage you to please adhere to these restrictions that can only assist in the continued suppression of COVID-19 in South West Victoria.

Study from home continues

  • Students will continue to be trained remotely and study from home during the current coronavirus restrictions
  • Currently we are offering face-to-face classes to a limited and controlled number of students where necessary due to course or student requirements.
  • The decision in regard to any course delivery occurring on campus requires an internal review and assessment process in regard to the need for face-to-face delivery, and is only occurring in a very limited number of instances.
  • In the rare instance where a student is visiting a campus to utilise a study space (due to their inability to study from home) or attend a class, they must be well and show no signs of a cold or flu, and adhere to the strict physical distancing and hygiene guidelines in place across each of our campuses.
  • Need any help with anything IT related? We have a dedicated Student Helpline for ICT. Please call 5564 8854 and our team will be happy to assist with any questions or provide support.

Student survey

A student survey was sent to all students on Friday 24 April, and a reminder on Wednesday 29 April. Our aim is to gain feedback on the student experience while studying from home, and what we can do to improve this experience.

If you’d like to participate in this short 4 question confidential survey go to surveymonkey.com/r/RWGN8MS

Download the COVIDSafe app

We all play a vital role in keeping each other safe and I encourage all students to consider downloading the COVIDSafe app released by the Australian Government this week.  

The app speeds up contacting people exposed to coronavirus, which helps to protect you, your co-workers, friends and family.

To find out more go to health.gov.au/resources/apps-and-tools/covidsafe-app

Flu Vaccinations

In preparation for any resumption of on-campus learning, we are encouraging flu vaccination for all students.  Whilst flu vaccinations will not prevent COVID-19 from developing, this proactive process assists our community to lessen the burden respiratory infections have on medical services generally.  You can access a vaccination via your GP or local pharmacy.

Our student wellbeing team are here for you

Our Student Wellbeing team are available to assist all students and are always happy to chat. 

We encourage you to get in touch with any of our team members if you feel you need some assistance.  They are a friendly bunch!

The Disability Services team are also here to support clients through their studies and develop individualised support plans targeted to your delivery modes. We can support you to explore online tutoring sessions, negotiation of reasonable adjustments, accessibility and more. Please call 5564 8720 or email Disability.support@swtafe.edu

Have any questions?

If you have any questions you can contact our Customer Service Teams or speak to your teacher. Call 1300 648 911 or email learn@swtafe.edu.au.

You can also find an information portal on the SWTAFE website where you can access the latest information, FAQ’s and student updates click here.

Keep it up. Stay at home.

I’m thrilled that our students have adapted so well during this challenging time and the new world we find ourselves in.  

“When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves” (Viktor E. Frank).  

Please continue to follow the government guidelines during the restrictions to keep yourself and your family safe.  Here’s a reminder of the rules under the current stage three restrictions vic.gov.au/coronavirus-covid-19-restrictions-victoria 

Keep up the great work with your studies and stay well.


 
Mark Fidge
CEO
South West TAFE