ANU moves to remote work and study

ANU moves to remote work and study

In recent days, many Australian universities have committed to stricter measures against the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19), such as implementing more stringent hygiene practices on campuses and social distancing.

Universities have also been moving lectures online as a way to mitigate risks associated with the potential spread of COVID-19, which has now claimed 16 lives in Australia and more than 30,000 globally.

Last night, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced restrictions on gatherings of more than two or more people in outdoor and indoor settings, including the closure of playgrounds, skate parks and outdoor gyms.

Earlier this month, the University of Sydney and Macquarie University announced they would be moving classes online to protect students and staff while providing continuity of teaching and learning.

The latest to do so is the Australian National University (ANU), which announced it was moving lectures online last week. A small group of identified staff will continue lab-based work on COVID-19, and maintain financial payments, payroll and security.

ANU Vice-Chancellor Professor Brian Schmidt said that from today, all teaching will be remote and, except limited and essential cases, the campus will be closed. 

“ANU will still operate as the nation’s university, but likely not from our campus until at least 27 June,” Professor Schmidt said.

“ANU medical experts are clear: to control the spread of COVID-19 we must take tough action to reduce the number of interactions on our campus, and take it now. And that is what we are doing”.

Professor Schmidt said the “extraordinary times mean we need to respond in an extraordinary way”.

“Our job now is to keep our great University operational, and our community safe,” he said.