Tertiary teaching keyed into Red traffic light settings

Dunedin's tertiary institutions say they are ready for the nationwide shift to the Red traffic light setting.

The new Government-mandated health regulations require, among other safety measures, that tertiary students can only attend classes with a vaccine pass.

Otago Polytechnic said additional health measures were in place to keep staff and students safe.

‘‘The health and safety of our learners and staff remain our top priority,’’ chief executive Megan Gibbons said.

Staff and students wishing to enter the Otago Polytechnic campus would be required to show their vaccine pass and wear masks at all times, she said.

‘‘We are encouraging staff to work from home as much as possible in order to keep our numbers on campus low.’’

Although a large portion of the school’s students would not return to campus for a number of weeks, Otago Polytechnic was well prepared and had been working hard on plans to deliver face-to-face teaching when the semester began, Dr Gibbons said.

A University of Otago spokeswoman said the university was prepared for the shift to Red.

‘‘We have followed government guidance and added precautions, including mandatory face coverings for staff and students when they are on parts of campus open to the public or attending classes or other learning activities,’’ she said.

Physical distancing would be in place across campuses and facilities, and all students would have to have a valid My Vaccine Pass or government-approved exemption to join on-campus classes.

Vaccine passes would not be checked as students entered buildings.

A few Summer School venues would change to fit distancing rules, the spokeswoman said.

Also, examinations for 10 of the 22 Summer School papers would be held online, in most cases because those papers were taught remotely.

For now, the majority of first-semester papers for 2022 would be in person, with exceptions made in such instances as very large classes.

-- eric.trump@odt.co.nz




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