CENTRAL Victorian students are preparing for another round of remote learning after the state government confirmed a seven-day COVID-19 lockdown.
From 11.59pm on Thursday, all primary and secondary schools will close. Vulnerable children and the children of authorised workers will still be able to attend.
Catholic Education Office director Paul Desmond said schools were told weeks ago that they should prepare for potential lockdowns and restrictions.
"I have no sense of surprise," he said. "I believe parents will understand that the government has to initiate these measures, and principals and staff in these schools fully appreciate the gravity of the situation."
Schools will have a student-free day on Friday to allow teachers and staff members to finalise remote learning classes.
Bendigo Senior Secondary College principal Dale Pearce said his school had to rearrange a number of mid-year exams and assessments as a result of the lockdown.
"It's been a whirlwind 48 hours," he said. "Like many schools, we were looking at what could give. For us, it was the mid-year exams.
"We were keen to preserve teaching times ahead of the school based assessments. We're fortunate that we should have the return of three days of teaching before the General Achievement Test on June 9."
Marist College Bendigo principal Darren McGregor said some students were starting to feel anxious at the prospect of the next week.
"It feels a little bit like the second lockdown last year," he said. "It's a little bit closer to Bendigo so that raises that anxiety.
"But students know they will get that good support. We have also written to parents to make sure they are calm around their kids because children - the younger ones especially - absorb that anxiety."
Mr Pearce said some BSSC students and staff were also anxious about the Bendigo connection.
"We had staff and students who live out in Axedale, some of whom needed to isolate because they had been in that exposure site," he said.
"The lockdown earlier this year was triggering for some students and there is an element of that this time, but it's good we have a clear and definite end date.
"We're given some confidence after the lockdown end date was met earlier this year."
Mr Desmond said while remote learning was not ideal, there would be the supports in place to help students and parents.
"Schools are great places and it's our deepest wish that schools can reopen soon," he said.
"However, these are extraordinary circumstances and we are so fortunate in this country to have the facilities for remote learning.
"I congratulate the parents on their attitudes that make this work."
Mr McGregor said Marist College had provided computers to some of the younger students to ensure they could complete remote learning without any issues.
He said the school would continue to support students where it could.
"The main aim is to make sure these kids are feeling calm and safe," Mr McGregor said. "Our staff know what to do and our wellbeing team will wrap their support around them.
"We will be touching base with each kid every day."
The principals and director said they were hopeful the lockdown would end after the seven days.
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