NSW announces mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for teachers

NSW announces mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for teachers

The COVID-19 vaccine will become compulsory for teachers in NSW from November onwards, health authorities have confirmed today.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian and the Education Minister Sarah Mitchell made the announcement this morning as part of the state’s roadmap for students to return to face-to-face learning. Teaching staff are the latest cohort of workers to be included in the state’s mandatory vaccination order to combat the growing Delta variant, and will need to be vaccinated by November 8.

Berejiklian said teachers will be prioritised in the vaccine rollout with dedicated days for teachers from September 6. It will also be mandatory for all teachers and high school students to wear masks once they return to face-to-face teaching.

Kindergarten and year 1 will be the first groups to return from October 25. Year 2, 6 and 11 students will go back on November 1, followed by the remainder of students from November 8. Meanwhile HSC exams have been delayed until November 9, with results expected to be released in early January.

The expanded vaccine mandate comes as Pfizer eligibility opens up to all adults aged 16 and over. Year 12 students in the LGAs of concern have already been prioritised for vaccinations as part of the state's attempts to allow HSC exams to go ahead.

NSW today recorded 882 new cases of COVID-19, and two additional deaths until 8pm last night.

More to follow.