Temperature checks at Melbourne schools

Daily temperature checks will be introduced at schools across metropolitan Melbourne and some regional areas as a precautionary coronavirus measure.

More than 14,000 thermometers will be distributed to schools in the state’s 32 locked-down local government areas, Education Minister James Merlino announced on Thursday. 

If a student has a temperature of 37.5C or above, schools will be required to contact parents or carers to arrange for students to return home. 

Families will be encouraged to seek testing for coronavirus or the advice of their healthcare professional.

“Daily temperature checks will help make sure unwell students stay at home and do not risk spreading coronavirus,” Mr Merlino said in a statement.

“I understand that this is a stressful time for parents, but we are following the best medical advice and taking every possible precaution to ensure the safety of all Victorians.”

Temperature checks will also be introduced for children from locked-down areas who attend school outside of the boundary line. 

Only senior secondary students, year 10 students who study VCE subjects, children of essential workers and those attending specialist schools will return to face-to-face learning on Monday.

School holidays for all other students have been extended for a week while teachers and parents prepare for a return to online learning. 

From Thursday, residents in metropolitan Melbourne and Mitchell Shire, north of the city, re-entered lockdown for six weeks.

Mitchell Shire takes in towns including Broadford, Kilmore, Pyalong, Seymour, Tallarook and Wallan. 

People in the locked-down areas can only leave their homes to get food and supplies, receive or provide care, exercise, and study or work.

Victoria recorded another 134 new cases of COVID-19 on Wednesday, the second-highest daily total after a record 191 cases on Tuesday.

Numbers for Thursday had not been released by midday.

More than 850 cases remain active, an increase of nearly 800 in a month. Victoria has a total of 2942 COVID-19 cases.

Seven hundred police officers and 264 Australian Defence Force members will enforce the stage three lockdown, with booze bus-type checks in place.

Police can issue on-the-spot fines of up to $1652 to individuals and $9913 to businesses for flouting the rules. 

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