School children can’t miss out on end-of-year events

School children can’t miss out on end-of-year events

School children who do not turn 12 until after November 26 face missing out on end-of-year excursions because they are ineligible for Covid-19 vaccinations.

 Member for South West Coast Roma Britnell on Tuesday asked Health Minister Martin Foley what the Victorian Government would do to ensure children under 12 were not excluded from end-of-year excursions or celebrations.

 On November 26, the government will change the vaccination requirements to include Victorian children over 12-years of age. However, those under 12 remain ineligible.

 “Minister, parents and students rightly fear that children may be excluded from an end-of-year trip through no fault of their own,” Ms Britnell said in Parliament.

 “They will be punished because they turn 12 after November 26, but do not have enough time to receive two vaccination doses before their end-of-year excursions.

 “What provisions are being made for those turning 12 to be able to go on a school excursion, and participate in society more broadly, during the period between their twelfth birthday and second vaccination dose?”

 Ms Britnell said it was crucial all children were able to participate in end-of-year events.

 “The last two years have been so hard on school children, as lockdowns and restrictions stripped many of their usual celebrations and rites of passage,” she said.

 “Now that we have very high vaccination rates in Victoria, and the rollout will start to include children over 12, there needs to be provisions in place to ensure our school-aged children do not miss out on important events.”

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