- Questions on Notice No 6208
- Assembly59 Parliament First Session
- Asked: 6 October 2021
Question on Notice
Mr Bull (Gippsland East) to ask the Minister for Education — Coonawarra Farm Resort in the Gippsland East electorate, which relies on school camps for its viability, remains uncertain about when school camps will resume for Victorian students in relation to when business supports will conclude. This has the owners very concerned about their future.
(1) Will the Minister align the recommencement of school camps with the conclusion of business supports.
(2) If this guarantee cannot be provided, what supports will be made available to businesses and staff in this industry if the department delays resumption beyond the conclusion of business supports.
- Answered: 23 November 2021
I am informed as follows:
As Minister for Education, my greatest responsibility is the wellbeing of students and school staff. Throughout this pandemic, decisions on the operation of Victorian schools have been made on the advice of the Victorian Chief Health Officer.
I acknowledge the important contribution of the school camp industry, and the benefits to Victorian
students accessing these services. The advantages of outdoor education and nature-based recreation and their positive impact on learning are well documented, and the services provided by the school camp industry are integral to the Government meeting its aims as part of the Education State.
The Andrews Labor Government has announced the easing of restrictions given the early achievement of the 80 per cent vaccination target, from 6pm Friday 29 October.
This means that all metropolitan Melbourne year levels will return to full-time onsite learning from Monday 1 November, joining regional Victorian students, who returned to full-time onsite learning on Friday 22 October.
All schools will be able to recommence a range of activities, consistent with community settings and school vaccination requirements. This means that from Monday 1 November schools will be able to travel across Victoria for camps and excursions.
The Government also has a range of supports for businesses affected by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, including the Business Costs Assistance Program which has been extended through October and November. This provides businesses with further certainty that support will continue in line with Victoria’s Roadmap.
The Hon James Merlino MP
Minister for Education
Minister for Mental Health
Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers