Northern Territory schools will remain open for term two, as teachers and Education department staff continue to weigh different options for how education will be delivered in the NT during the coronavirus pandemic, Education Minister Selena Uibo said.
Reports in other NT media on Tuesday that most Territory students would complete term two online were inaccurate, Ms Uibo said.
“Right now our medical advice … remains the same, that schools are safe,” she told ABC Radio Alice Springs. “That could change next week … that’s why in terms of planning it’s so important we have these provisions in place.”
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But Ms Uibo said different options were being canvassed as the future remains uncertain.
“Term two schooling will be compulsory again,” she said. “In terms of education delivery, what that looks like in the Northern Territory, could change to what our traditional ideas and concepts are of schooling.
“But we’re looking at what flexible and adaptable models we can put in place with the support of the education department for all our government schools.”
Ms Uibo added that those “flexible” models could include traditional “face-to-face” teaching, smaller class sizes, online teaching or “material packs” sent home.
“There’s an array of different methods that we can use to continue education and each school is working through that this week,” she said.
Most states agreed on Tuesday to move Term two to online, but Ms Uibo said the Territory was not ready to do that and was still looking at all options.
Meanwhile, federal Education Minister Dan Tehan said that Year 12 students will graduate this year.
“There will be no Year 13, there will be no mass repeating,” he said. “Every student will get an ATAR certificate for 2002 so they can go to university, go to vocational education, so they can go on to employment next year.”
Ms Uibo said the NT Education Department was working to ensure that would happen here and could include changes to the way assessments are conducted.
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