Hi everyone and welcome to this bonus episode of the Teacher Wellbeing podcast. Today I’m talking about teaching in the time of covid-19.
So I am recording this not with my regular mic and it’s just raw, imperfect, in-edited and un-produced, because I want to get it into your earbuds as soon as possible.
This is being recorded at a very particular moment in history. It’s lunchtime, Monday 23rd March 2020 and I’m in Queensland Australia. The Covid-19 pandemic has devastated or is in the process of devastating many countries around the world, including China, Italy, France, Spain, the US and the UK. Here in Australia we have now got more than 1200 cases, are being directed to practice social distancing, various states and territories are closing their borders domestically, and there is a petition of doctors raising concerns that we are heading for the same fate as Italy if something doesn’t change dramatically in our response, and yet schools remain open. Last night our Prime Minister held a press conference where he announced sweeping new social distancing measures by closing pubs, clubs, gyms, churches and other public gathering places, but emphasised that schools will remain open. Victoria, ACT and NSW however have split from this in various ways, either announcing school closures this week or at the moment NSW is saying schools stay open but they are urging parents to keep kids at home. Here in Queensland, the Queensland Teachers Union held an emergency meeting this morning and released a newsflash a couple of hours ago demanding that Queensland state schools be closed to students from Wednesday. Whether that happens, remains to be seen. Of course I’m well aware that this all may change, by tonight even, but at the time of recording, that’s the situation as it stands.
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