Staff at SCU are delaying their return to work after a fresh COVID-19 outbreak.
Staff at SCU are delaying their return to work after a fresh COVID-19 outbreak. Marc Stapelberg

'Unpredictable' COVID-19 outbreak forces rethink at SCU

SOUTHERN Cross University has delayed its staff returning to campus next year due to the latest COVID-19 surge.

Vice president of operations, Allan Morris, said the decision was made after the sudden COVID-19 outbreak in NSW and the unpredictable nature of the virus's spread.

The planned return on Monday, January 4 has been pushed back to Monday February 1.

Students are still scheduled to return at the end of February for Session 1 study.

Mr Morris said campuses closed to most student classes and activities in March and most staff have been working from home.

"Southern Cross has always, and will continue to put the health and safety of our students and staff as our first priority," he said.

"We would much rather act with caution and in the context of the current fast-changing environment and not be forced into making last-minute or multiple changes to plans."

Southern Cross has about 9000 students across its three main campuses at Lismore, Gold Coast and Coffs Harbour and about 5000 online.

"It is important to recognise that COVID-19 remains an active issue," Mr Morris said.

When staff do return to the campuses, adherence to the 1.5m physical distancing guidelines, as set by the relevant state health departments, will be required.

Student Ambassadors will be engaged as COVID-19 marshalls to remind people to maintain distancin, especially in high traffic areas such as the libraries, cafés, building foyers and corridors.

All people on campus will be required to register their attendance each day.



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