“Stage 4” lockdowns in Victoria?

It seems that there are widespread rumours of an impending move to “Stage 4” lockdowns in parts of Victoria.

However, some media reports indicate that –

“A message stating that tougher restrictions will come into effect on Wednesday night and outlining what Stage 4 may include is circulating online. 3AW understand this message is fake.”

As school leaders consider the range of possible scenarios it is important to reflect on – what is ‘Stage 4’

The media are suggesting –

“There is no official guide that outlines what measures would be taken if Victoria went to stage 4 restrictions but places like New Zealand have previously introduced what it called level 4 restrictions.
These were aimed at eliminating the coronavirus and included the closure of schools and other educational facilities, and the closure of businesses except essential services such as supermarkets, pharmacies and medical clinics.”

And this is consistent with the New Zealand Alert Level 4 – Lockdown.

When they say “closure” of schools what they are really saying is remote learning, again if New Zealand is the model.  Their detailed outline of Level 4 indicates –

“All educational facilities closed.

  • All schools engaged in some form of distance learning.
  • Necessary tertiary student and some school hostel  (where international students cannot return home and/or it is not safe for domestic students to return home) accommodation can remain open.”

If this approach was to be taken the direct impact on schools is likely to be a return to the remote learning model, with some on-site supervision at least of children of “essential workers”, as provided earlier in the pandemic response.