12 months worth of hand sanitiser for NSW schools
The state government has secured enough hand sanitiser to supply NSW schools for a year, in a move designed to get kids back to school and boost the economy.
Data collected by the government has shown sending students back to school has a low health risk, but a high economic benefit. That's because parents are more productive without the added burden of homeschooling.
The low-risk, high-reward outcome of schools returning is why sending students back to class is the first step in easing strict COVID-19 restrictions.
Local production of hand sanitiser and other protective gear has also ramped up, ensuring the government has enough disinfectant to last the state's schools for a year.
The decision to ask parents to send kids back to the classroom only came after the state government was assured there was enough hand sanitiser to supply schools for a year at full attendance.
It comes after the government issued a rallying cry to local businesses at the start of April, asking companies to help produce vital protective equipment and other coronavirus-fighting supplies.
Within a week, more than 1000 businesses registered their interest in helping the cause.
On Tuesday, Gladys Berejiklian said the government had ramped up capacity in schools to ensure they could operate safely.
"We've made sure that we've probably gone a bit over and above in terms of what provisions we've put in place," she said.
"We've also made sure we have enough hand sanitizer, soap and all those things which make a school community feel safe, not just be safe."
While parents are being told students will only be able to be back at school full time from term three, it's understood the transition back to normal classes could come much faster.
On Tuesday, Gladys Berejiklian announced students would return to school for one day a week from May 11.
"Initially, it will just be a day a week and then progressively two days and then we hope by the end of term two we will be in a position to have students going back to school in a full-time capacity by term three," Premier Gladys Berejiklian said.
The roster has been left to principals to work out, although the Premier said a set of guidelines would ensure it helped families with multiple kids in school.
Originally published as 12 months worth of hand sanitiser for NSW schools