Vic teachers must get COVID-19 vaccine

September 22, 2021 BY

Mandatory: All staff at Victorian schools and childcare services must have their first jab by October 18. Photo: DAN PELED/AAP IMAGE

VICTORIAN teachers and childcare workers will have to get vaccinated against COVID-19 before they return to work.

Education Minister James Merlino announced all staff at schools and childcare services will need to have their first jab by October 18 or have a booking within a week of that date.

They will need to be fully vaccinated by November 29.

All government school staff will be entitled to half a day of paid time off to get vaccinated.

“Anyone who works on-site at schools or early childhood settings, they will not be able to work on site if they are not vaccinated,” Mr Merlino said.

He said a survey of 33,000 teachers found 75 per cent were already fully vaccinated.

The announcement comes as the state recorded 628 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 and three deaths.

The cases include four in Mitchell Shire, two in Geelong and two in Moorabool.

Over 250 people are in hospital, of which 58 are in intensive care including 37 on a ventilator.

Year 12 students will be the first to return to face-to-face learning on October 5, with a staggered return of other years starting with prep to year 2 on October 18.

The remaining year levels will be able to return on October 26 but only year 7 and year 11s will be able to attend five days a week.

The government will spend $190 million to make sure schools are properly ventilated by the start of term four, including the rollout of 51,000 ventilators.

Some $60 million will be spent on installing shade sails at 2149 schools to create more outdoor learning spaces.

A Ventilation Technical Advisory Panel will be established to undertake further risk assessments of other environments including early childhood settings and youth justice facilities.