After members raised concerns about COVID-19 risks associated with HSC marking, the IEU and other unions requested discussions with NESA to address issues around arrangements for the upcoming marking process.
As a result of IEU representations, NESA has announced that both Society and Culture and English Extension 2 will be marked remotely on screen, rather than in a corporate environment as originally planned.
And rather than attending a physical venue in Alexandria, markers will be in a virtual venue – they will work standard marking centre hours (corporate hours) and will be paid on an hourly basis.
There is general agreement between the IEU, other unions and NESA that, during the COVID-19 crisis, marking and its associated processes should be undertaken at home where it is reasonably practicable to do so.
NESA is mindful that Supervisors of Marking and Senior Markers in many courses may prefer to gather at a central location to develop the marking kit. This process will be facilitated where requested. NESA acknowledges, however, the IEU’s view that markers should not unnecessarily be placed into environments that could compromise their health.
Where markers are unable or uncomfortable about attending a marking centre for the briefing process, NESA is committed to making appropriate arrangements for them to undertake the briefing process from home.
Where it is anticipated markers will gather at a marking centre, additional buildings with space contingencies have been secured to accommodate physical distancing requirements. Hygiene marshals will be present at all sites. NESA is exploring a range of technology options to facilitate the online briefing process.
It is anticipated that the standards setting process will also be conducted externally, with markers working corporate hours.
The IEU will continue meeting with NESA to minimise risks to members during these trying times.