Below follows a summary of the key points regarding the directions for reopening of institutions offering qualifications registered on the occupational qualifications sub – framework as issued by the Department of Higher Education and Training. The Government Gazette in which they have been published is attached below.
These Directions are to be implemented by all institutions and individuals involved in executing all activities related to programmes registered on the Occupational Qualifications Sub -Framework (OQSF)
In terms of staff and learners returning to the workplace and places of learning the following should be taken into account:
- The return of staff and learners to institutions will be phased in as provided for, in terms of the Alert Levels.
- Learners and staff who are able to work remotely should be encouraged to do so.
- The social impact of the lockdown requires consideration for learners whose living conditions at home are such that they are not in a position to participate meaningfully in remote learning.
- Ensure that physical distancing is maintained.
- An assessment of the physical infrastructure of each institution should be conducted.
- Specific plans should be developed for the phased return of the learners and staff after a risk assessment has been conducted.
- These plans need to be ready for inspection and be communicated to all the stakeholders
- Once the institution has confirmed that it is ready for their return individuals recalled may do so. They must also ensure that they are in possession of the relevant permit for return before traveling to the institutions
- All institutions and workplaces must identify isolation quarantine facilities, develop and publicise protocols for any staff or learners who present with symptoms or test positive.
- Provision must be made for: sanitisation, screening of staff, learners and the public, entering the premises
- There should be provisions of masks and other appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
- Guidelines for staff and learners regarding age vulnerabilities and the prevalence of co- morbidities must be in place.
- Links to online resource and the news portal www.SAcoronavirus.coza to handle cases for should be available.
- All institutions must have a COVID -19 Response Task Team in place.
Return to contact classes
Each institution must implement its teaching and learning plan to ensure that physical distancing and other health protocols are observed at all times. This implies the implementation of blended learning methodologies and contact teaching, where necessary, must adhere to physical distancing.
At all alert levels and at all times, screening, the wearing of masks, hand-washing and sanitising is required for all staff and learners.
Institutions will have two weeks from the date of the implementation of the level to ensure that all preparations have been done.
Risk – Adjusted Strategy: Alert Level 3
Unless otherwise directed or as the sector permits, a maximum of 33 %, of the learner population will be allowed to return to the institution on condition that they comply with the applicable specific regulations.
A two weeks waiting period should be allowed after the announcement of an alert-level, to allow for readiness, learners’ travel and disinfection of the premises.
Supporting and other mandatory activities will be conducted remotely and/or physically
All learners who report to the institution must first be orientated on the COVID -19 safety measures as well as the contents of this guideline before the commencement of any training
Evidence of learner orientation must be made available as and when required.