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August 04, 2020, 02:38:17 pm

Author Topic: COVID-19 and Education  (Read 28104 times)  Share 

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turinturambar

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #210 on: July 14, 2020, 12:57:01 am »
+8
This is true. But don't they already have stuff that they've been testing, at any rate?

As I understand it, the usual vaccine development process is measured in years.  This is already fast.  There are multiple rounds of testing, testing things like is it safe, does it actually provide immunity, does it have unexpected side effects, etc.  Typically these things would be done in serial - we're trying to do them more in parallel, but there are still limits to how fast you can go.

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Why can't we just do hard lockdown - as in, no one sees anyone else for two weeks, no contact at all, and then test everyone? Then the people who come in positive can be kept home (by force if needed) and everyone else can go about their merry way. Or three weeks to be safe.

What's the false positive rate on those tests?  And the false negative rate?  Who's administering them?  And processing them?  How long does it take to test everyone? (took multiple days for a few towers, remember)  Are any of the people administering them sick?  How do you know there's no-one tested who has contracted it but are not quite infectious yet?  Are the people keeping other people home by force not sick?  Can they ensure the integrity of their protective equipment while also restraining someone?

During this hard lockdown, who's taking care of people in hospitals?  Aged care homes?  People feeling suicidal from the enforced isolation?  People in quarantine hotels?  Who's delivering babies?  Who's stopping the people who inevitably break that lockdown?  What's the correct response to domestic violence in lockdown?  Who's keeping electricity running?  Water?  Other essential services?

And that's just off the top of my head.  The four reasons aren't just government being too nice: There are good reasons for each of them.  We can certainly debate whether we should have a harder lockdown than we have now - I'm not convinced that the benefits would outweigh the personal and community costs of going too much harder, and I think you'd get outright rebellion if you presented it as the plan that solved everything and it turned out not to.  But to say we can 100% stop society for 2 weeks - we just can't.

That said, I do find it odd that this situation in Melbourne is more serious than it was in April, and yet the restrictions are slightly less restrictive.  I suspect part of that is that the authorities are (correctly) wary of lockdown fatigue.  The best rules in the world don't help if you can't convince enough of your population to follow them.

Like turinturambar stated, distribution also isn't easy, and poses the question of who gets vaccinated first and if those in poverty will even have access to the vaccine.

In a country like Australia, we likely have the resources to give it to everyone, poverty or not, and doing so is likely to reduce the risk for everyone in Australia (particularly if the early vaccines are more like 60 - 70% effective).  We will probably rely on the fact that we can largely keep out unvaccinated people, and so people in poverty stricken countries without the vaccine will not be as significant a risk to Australians.  Not saying this is a good thing, just that I've been profoundly disappointed by how much Covid-19 has shown off our human insularity, pitting country against country, state against state, return travellers against people already in the country, community against community, etc.

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I think this is because hard lockdown for any period of time will significantly worsen the already damaged economy, and the government cares about the economy a lot.

This has been Fed vs State the entire time.  The Feds have more responsibility for the economy, the states more responsibility for health.  They've worked together better than in some countries, but Victoria and NSW in particular have throughout been stricter than national or the other states.

Retrospectively it looks like we should've gone with the elimination strategy from the start. Given Australia has no borders with other countries and at the beginning only had minimal community transmission it becomes an ideal country to go for the elimination strategy. However, looking back I don't think a lot of the general public would've accepted this and would've said it is an overreaction. Even with the initial lockdown it was quite possible to be done once we got to low levels in Victoria but everyone was complaining about the need to open up quickly.

I still don't get how this squares with Covid-19 jumping out of quarantine hotels.  Maybe that happened before we eased lockdown - I'm not 100% sure any more - but while there remains the possibility of errors, there remains the possibility of errors with serious consequences after we've declared it eliminated.  NZ, poster child of elimination, have had people get out of quarantine on multiple occasions, at least one where someone was positive.  They haven't had spikes as a result (that I know of), but is that 100% good management, or is there some luck as well?  We had people going through quarantine hotels in Melbourne then testing positive in NT and NSW, and I don't think we know whether they caught it in hotspot suburbs once out of quarantine, or whether it was still dormant somewhere inside them (we do know people can be ill for months after catching it while testing negative - does that manifest in any other strange ways that end up contagious?)

I have long felt we should drive it as close to zero as we can get it and try to keep it there, including border control as one of our most effective measures, but I'm not sure I believe in complete elimination with absolutely zero human error (though one of the advantages of driving it towards zero is that you can make more mistakes without consequences - because I still believe other states and other individuals within other states have made mistakes, but got away with those mistakes because they had a low virus load and maybe got a bit lucky).

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The economy vs health argument is interesting. We have already seen some countries that have prioritised the economy but they are still getting destroyed regardless. Australia has done ok to somewhat artificially prop up the economy via stimulus payments but once this is all over the real impact of the pandemic is likely to be seen.

Part of the problem is that governments cannot by fiat declare that their citizens will not be scared of Covid-19 or of unemployment.  Many people were reducing their economic activity before official lockdowns, and that hits the economy.  Then of course businesses close and companies lay off workers (less here with JobKeeper, but it's still an issue).  Then people feel less certain about the security of their jobs and are more worried about spending, and the cycle continues.  I largely agreed with Scott Morrison's "once you start re-opening you should try not to close again", because it shatters confidence re-closing and that will have long-term consequences - but we always knew that there could be situations serious enough to have to go backwards.  Without the quarantine hotels here, maybe Victoria would have avoided spikes too.  No idea.  Rightly or wrongly, I did feel fairly safe in Melbourne in June, though I didn't go out of my way to join gatherings of people (other than family) or to eat in (or even to get my hair cut :P ).

When I compare us with, say, the US, the US has many states which reopened against the health advice because of the economy, and quite a few are now re-closing.  We re-opened following health advice, and, as I said, I at least thought it was tracking fairly well for the first month...

Finally, I can see in retrospect that a number of times during this pandemic my opinion has been wrong - so don't trust my judgement in public health matters :P
« Last Edit: July 14, 2020, 01:04:22 am by turinturambar »
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The Cat In The Hat

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #211 on: July 16, 2020, 09:25:42 am »
+1
What's the false positive rate on those tests?  And the false negative rate?  Who's administering them?  And processing them?  How long does it take to test everyone? (took multiple days for a few towers, remember)  Are any of the people administering them sick?  How do you know there's no-one tested who has contracted it but are not quite infectious yet?  Are the people keeping other people home by force not sick?  Can they ensure the integrity of their protective equipment while also restraining someone?

During this hard lockdown, who's taking care of people in hospitals?  Aged care homes?  People feeling suicidal from the enforced isolation?  People in quarantine hotels?  Who's delivering babies?  Who's stopping the people who inevitably break that lockdown?  What's the correct response to domestic violence in lockdown?  Who's keeping electricity running?  Water?  Other essential services?
I know these are issues, I knew it when I said it. It doesn't change the fact that that could be the best policy.
'Outright rebellion' - in a world that is more connected than ever before, I think we're just too much used to our own way! I get that it's hard, I get it, I get it, but seriously? In preparing for it, aren't we basically telling people we expect them to break rules in such a way that we'll probably end up with several people dead? In the past they would've done it, wouldn't've expected to break rules (except for a minority) and wouldn't have the ability to contact others as we can. Granted, this is unprecendented, but we've had smaller-scale things than this before and stuck to the rules. Is it unreasonable to class us Generation Wimp?
(or even to get my hair cut :P ).
We could tell :P ;)
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turinturambar

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #212 on: July 16, 2020, 11:12:56 pm »
+2
I know these are issues, I knew it when I said it. It doesn't change the fact that that could be the best policy.

If it's unworkable it's not the best policy.

Quote
'Outright rebellion' - in a world that is more connected than ever before, I think we're just too much used to our own way! I get that it's hard, I get it, I get it, but seriously? In preparing for it, aren't we basically telling people we expect them to break rules in such a way that we'll probably end up with several people dead? In the past they would've done it, wouldn't've expected to break rules (except for a minority) and wouldn't have the ability to contact others as we can. Granted, this is unprecendented, but we've had smaller-scale  things than this before and stuck to the rules. Is it unreasonable to class us Generation Wimp?

Absolutely it's unreasonable to class us Generation Wimp.  Talking about people dying isn't necessarily helpful when I identified multiple ways your suggestion could put people at risk of dying.  And what makes you think  you'd find greater compliance in past generations than now?

But you took two words way out of context.  Read the sentence again.  This isn't about obedience, it's about trust.  I have said from the start that it's dangerous to say "If everyone obeys, we will get through this quicker", because I'm not convinced it's true.  Statistically, it's probably somewhat true, but it ignores the impact of luck on spread, and it leads almost inevitably to a blame game when we don't actually get through it faster, or when (like this time) we go back into lock-down again when we were implicitly promised last time that our tighter restrictions in Victoria would make Victoria safer than the other states.  I understand why they do it - to try and incentivise better compliance - but they're making implicit promises that they can't actually fulfil.

I think this is a lot worse with your proposal: Yes, I think a large percentage of Victorians would agree to harsher restrictions over a few weeks over lighter restrictions over 6+ weeks.  But to make that deal, the government has to essentially guarantee that the harsh restrictions will be successful.  And they can't.  If they succeed, great.  But if they fail, how many people will trust them to get it right next time?  Lighter restrictions over a longer period of time allows them to adjust restrictions and choose a re-open date in response to the data, rather than making a one-off gamble and hoping it works out.

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We could tell :P ;)

Walking to my local grocery store to get groceries and exercise today, I walked past the hairdresser I usually use.  They were closed with a sign on the door that one of their clients was a contact of a Covid-19 positive case, so they were waiting for test results before re-opening.  I joked with a co-worker that I wouldn't get my hair cut this year.  This may well end up true.
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The Cat In The Hat

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #213 on: July 17, 2020, 02:08:14 pm »
0
If it's unworkable it's not the best policy.
Perhaps. But I contend that it isn't unworkable - just difficult.
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Absolutely it's unreasonable to class us Generation Wimp.  Talking about people dying isn't necessarily helpful when I identified multiple ways your suggestion could put people at risk of dying.  And what makes you think  you'd find greater compliance in past generations than now?
We're too used to being able to do everything we want. I do think we'd have greater compliance in past generations. For one, they were more used to being forced to make do - something we aren't. There was this thing called 'grin and bear it', 'stiff upper lip'. You notice it isn't extant any more?
But more importantly, older generations had more belief in God, allowing them to trust in him and know that he had given them this for a reason (such as, this might be the return of Jesus!) So they could trust in God and then they wouldn't be getting terrified by a virus like a lot of people nowdays. Rebellion is allowed and I would say almost encouraged in the depraved society in which we live. Once the society as a whole walked away from the truths of the Bible it all went downhill from there.
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But you took two words way out of context.  Read the sentence again.  This isn't about obedience, it's about trust. 
OK.
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I think this is a lot worse with your proposal: Yes, I think a large percentage of Victorians would agree to harsher restrictions over a few weeks over lighter restrictions over 6+ weeks.  But to make that deal, the government has to essentially guarantee that the harsh restrictions will be successful.  And they can't.  If they succeed, great.  But if they fail, how many people will trust them to get it right next time?  Lighter restrictions over a longer period of time allows them to adjust restrictions and choose a re-open date in response to the data, rather than making a one-off gamble and hoping it works out.
That might be true. I guess people are probably less compliant now because of the time we did it and relaxed already. I'm not too happy with people's behaviour then either, but that isn't the issue now.
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I joked with a co-worker that I wouldn't get my hair cut this year.  This may well end up true.
Perhaps... do you really think it'll go on that long? Bringing it back to education - what about VCE education and so forth? Do you think it'll stay the way they're optimistically saying now?
Spoiler
I don't. I think we're in, at this point, for the long haul. My social skills are dying, but I don't mind...
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Bri MT

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #214 on: July 17, 2020, 04:30:17 pm »
+15
This thread is for discussion about COVID-19's impact on education and, as has been noted, it's been veering off-topic. There is already a thread on opinions about Victoria's lockdown here. This topic of conversation can invoke strong feelings and be contentious, any posts (whether here or in rants and debate) will be expected to adhere to the forum rules, especially our first one of respect.

Let's get replies here back to just being about the impact of covid-19 on education

The Cat In The Hat

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #215 on: July 17, 2020, 09:11:13 pm »
+3
This thread is for discussion about COVID-19's impact on education and, as has been noted, it's been veering off-topic. There is already a thread on opinions about Victoria's lockdown here. This topic of conversation can invoke strong feelings and be contentious, any posts (whether here or in rants and debate) will be expected to adhere to the forum rules, especially our first one of respect.

Let's get replies here back to just being about the impact of covid-19 on education

Sorry. Turin, you want to shift to the other thread?

Will COVID shut down schools again? Exams? I reckon so but what are others' opinions?
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Sine

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #216 on: July 27, 2020, 12:30:04 pm »
+7
Questions for those who are going to school currently.

What sort of interventions are in place at school to prevent the spread of the virus. I know schools have temperature checks in the morning but for asymptomatic individuals what other changes are in place. How often are classrooms getting cleaned? How close are students normally? What goes on during recess and lunch time? How often are students not following the rules? 

whys

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #217 on: July 27, 2020, 01:39:01 pm »
+12
Questions for those who are going to school currently.

What sort of interventions are in place at school to prevent the spread of the virus. I know schools have temperature checks in the morning but for asymptomatic individuals what other changes are in place. How often are classrooms getting cleaned? How close are students normally? What goes on during recess and lunch time? How often are students not following the rules?
Firstly, itís very difficult to maintain perfect social distancing in a school environment. Iím not trying to defend anyoneís actions, but itís just the truth. I canít speak for others, but at my school we have a whole bunch of cleaners who just clean for the entire day while we are at school. They wipe down the lockers, doors and door handles, the microwave/sink stations and tables for the entire day, while weíre in classes and at recess/lunch. We also have billions of hand sanitiser bottles and installed automatic dispensers with hand sanitiser, and I can happily say everyone sanitises their hands very often (or most, at least). We also have made all the stairs one way to reduce congestion and made a lot of walking paths in the buildings one way. Everything Iíve just said wasnít specific to the second wave though, we were doing all this before too. We do socially distance during lunch and recess but itís probably ineffective as there are a handful of individuals who forget to social distance every time. We have teachers coming around to remind us, though. So yeah, social distancing measures are in place during recess and lunch, but they arenít really in place during class. During class we still sit next to one another, except the tables are all separated (still 2 on a table though, looks pretty old school haha). Thatís about all we have, but Iím not sure what else can be done. We canít have only 1 student at each table because we donít have enough tables for that and classrooms arenít big enough to have only 1 student at a table. Obviously we donít have any large gathering things, all assemblies and stuff are online and we have to attend from our classrooms.
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Chocolatemilkshake

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #218 on: July 27, 2020, 03:25:53 pm »
+10
My school is pretty similar to whys with extra cleaners, sanitiser bottles everywhere and one way stair ways. I think for my school during the second wave theyíve been a lot more strict with social distancing. At lunch and recess students are doing a much better job at maintaining at least a 1 metre distance between them. Although I agree with whys that itís certainly not perfect (and some students are less compliant than others ).

Also with the second wave, as no 7-10s are coming to school, we have enough space for one student per table. This has definitely helped with social distancing in class. Our school has opened up all the classrooms that they can to help with this and we all have room changes.

To restrict movement and crowds of people around lockers when the bell goes the teacher chooses half the class to leave and then the rest follows a couple of minutes later. Iím not sure how effective this is but at least theyíre trying I suppose. They are minimising the amount of teachers coming to school as well.
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ArtyDreams

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #219 on: July 27, 2020, 04:13:12 pm »
+9
Questions for those who are going to school currently.

What sort of interventions are in place at school to prevent the spread of the virus. I know schools have temperature checks in the morning but for asymptomatic individuals what other changes are in place. How often are classrooms getting cleaned? How close are students normally? What goes on during recess and lunch time? How often are students not following the rules? 


The measures we have this time around are pretty similar to last time - but definetely being taken more seriously this time around. It is no where near perfect and I still see room for improvement, but its been okay.

We are no longer using lockers and carrying our bags around with us each day to stop the congestion. Temperature checks are being done - not sure how effective they are in the long run but better than nothing I guess. Social distancing in class depends on the teachers and size of the class - some teachers force us to sit apart, works better in my smaller classes. I think the schools being cleaned after every day and a bit in between breaks too.

We've been using some classrooms from younger grades to ensure we are more spread around the school as our senior building doesn't quite accomodate for everyone.

Seems like a lot of school closures have been occurring - I've had a few days off already this term. Its quite inconvenient but definetely in the best interest of everyone. We're already behind and its quite hard switching between online and face-to-face. Being in one of the worst affected areas imo I'd prefer to go back to online for a couple of weeks. Thats just my opinion as most of us are very scared to be at school.

Edit: Masks have been adopted quite well with everyone - however they come on and off constantly to eat, drink, take a breather etc so its a bit unhygenic in a way as they're being touched from everywhere - but I've been quite impressed to see them in use. No social distancing during recess and lunch at all though.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2020, 04:16:58 pm by ArtyDreams »
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The Cat In The Hat

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #220 on: July 27, 2020, 04:38:00 pm »
+4
Am I the only year 12 who's staying home during the second wave? With various respiratory issues and a (non-COVID) cough at the moment, I decided it was better to stay at home, and anticipated being not the only one in a couple of days, yet I'm the only one at my school, which is a bit disadvantaging. Is there anyone else??
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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #221 on: July 27, 2020, 04:48:35 pm »
+6
I go to a rural school with only 4 cases in my shire which is like 3000 square km and one of the latest cases was a hospital employee...and i know SO MANY people who's parents work at the hospital. The local catholic school has enforced masks and tbch im surprised there isn't any sign of going into remote learning
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K888

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #222 on: July 27, 2020, 05:03:35 pm »
+6
Am I the only year 12 who's staying home during the second wave? With various respiratory issues and a (non-COVID) cough at the moment, I decided it was better to stay at home, and anticipated being not the only one in a couple of days, yet I'm the only one at my school, which is a bit disadvantaging. Is there anyone else??
I imagine you're not the only one staying at home - there would be quite a few year 12s who have medical conditions or other reasons that require them to stay at home. In the end, the most important thing is that you look after your own health.
I hope your school is giving you all the support you need!
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The Cat In The Hat

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #223 on: July 27, 2020, 05:13:32 pm »
+6
I hope your school is giving you all the support you need!
My school is actually very supportive, it's not nearly as easy though to learn from home and whatever. They're doing their best, but still. Remote learning. Isn't easy. Also, does not help with procrastination....
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Sine

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #224 on: July 27, 2020, 07:58:33 pm »
+5
-snip-
-snip-
-snip-
Thanks for these responses. Seems like everyone is making a heap of changes which is great but it is always going to be very difficult to regulate in a school environment.

Using all the classrooms and changing timetables was also something that I was thinking of in order to decrease the number of times students have to be within the same classroom in the same day. Having no lockers for some is also a great idea because I know in a lot of schools those areas tend to be the most congested and it would be difficult not to bump into someone else.