Parents across Australia are receiving conflicting advice about how to keep their children safe as coronavirus panic begins to set in across the country.
Despite coronavirus fears, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has made the decision to not shut down schools, instead telling students to socially distance themselves from each other by staying 1.5 metres apart at all times.
Contrary to the majority of the population, Morrison believes this advice to be “pretty straightforward” for those approximately 3.5 million Australian school children across the nation who are set to be sharing classrooms and playgrounds as per usual come tomorrow morning.
“You are (to stay) about 1.5m away. Ensuring that you refrain from that sort of physical contact, whether it might be a handshake or something a bit more intimate, unless close family and friends. It’s all commonsense.”
Maybe commonsense to the Australian Prime Minister but the rest of the nation is left scratching their heads and wondering whether to send children to school from tomorrow carrying with them a measuring tape at all times.
There is additional speculation as to whether the classrooms and the schools themselves are physically large enough to contain their respective entire student populations should this ‘straighforward’ 1.5 metre perimeter of safety be successfully maintained around each student at all times.
Meanwhile the virus can last potentially hours, or even days on hard surfaces (such as a school desk) according to a preprint published this week by researchers at the National Institutes of Health, Princeton and the University of California, Los Angeles.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison also announced today tougher travel restrictions, including a mandatory 14-day quarantine period for all international arrivals from midnight Sunday, and a ban on foreign cruise ships.
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