The government has also asked universities to delay the start of the 2021 university year to account for impacts of coronavirus on senior secondary students.
VCE study scores will continue to be a combination of school-based assessment and external exams.
VCAL students will have more time to complete their courses and this will be consistent with the revised dates for the VCE.
Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority is also examining a compressed end-of-year exam schedule – including slightly shortening each exam – in recognition of the disruption caused by the pandemic.
Some students undertaking Vocational Education and Training, VET might have the award of their VCE or VCAL delayed until the beginning of 2021 so they can complete mandatory practical or workplace learning requirements – ensuring that they are not disadvantaged by the lack of hands on practice while we fight this pandemic.
Premier Andrews said as authorities worked to slow the spread of coronavirus, the message to students and parents of government schools was clear– all children who can learn at home must learn from home – with exceptions only in extremely limited circumstances.
He said on-site learning would only be available for children whose parents couldn’t work from home and vulnerable students without access to a suitable learning environment at home.
He said small groups of VCE and VCAL students can also attend on-site for short periods if their learning requirements cannot happen at home.
“Physical-distancing provisions will be made for the safety for teachers and kids. To ensure more kids can learn from home, the government will loan more than 6000 laptops and tablets to students who don’t have access to digital technologies,” he said.
“Schools will also distribute other classroom devices as required to ensure all students who do not have access to a laptop or tablet at home will be provided one.
“Internet access should not determine a child’s access to education – so we will deliver free SIM cards or dongles to thousands of students at government schools who need them the most. This includes an agreement with Telstra to provide 4000 SIM cards for government primary and secondary school students.”
The Government has also bought an extra 1000 SIM-enabled dongle devices. Priority for the SIM cards and dongles will be given to senior secondary students, students in bushfire--affected areas, and families who cannot afford an internet connection at home.
Victorian government school classes will begin on Wednesday.
Mr Andrews said new arrangements would remain in place for the duration of term two and will then be subject to review.
“I know this year will be different to any that students, teachers and families have experienced before – but we are making sure that our kids still get the education they deserve,” he said.
“We’ve done the work and planning so we’re ready to make the move to remote and flexible learning, and I want to thank everyone involved for their dedication to our kids’ education at this unprecedented time.”
Mr Merlino: “Every student will get the support they need, whether they are learning at home or attending school on-site. We will provide a device to every child that needs one and provide thousands more with free internet.”
“We know this is a difficult time, particularly for VCE and VCAL students, but we will support our students, our teachers and our schools every step of the way."