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Collarts Responds To COVID-19

Jul 28, 2021

KEY UPDATES FROM COLLARTS

  • As of Wednesday 28th July, Collarts priority classes will be able to return to campus, but all other classes will remain in remote delivery for the present time.
  • As of 11:59pm Wednesday 14 July, masks are again mandatory in all indoor spaces. 
  • Density limits still apply to shared campus spaces (except classrooms and learning spaces). Please look out for posted maximum capacity signs, and ensure you are not exceeding these limits.
  • The government has extended the extension of the FEE-HELP loan fee removal until December 2021. Find out more information about what this could mean for you here;
  • There will be no disadvantage to Year 12s who plan on studying with us in 2021; 
  • Same great course, same great community;
  • Intake for 2021 is happening now. You can apply now.

 

TUESDAY 27 JULY

Dear Collarts students,

As you’ve probably seen, the Victorian Government has announced the easing of restrictions, as of 11:59pm Tuesday 27th July.

This is very positive news and reflects the extraordinary efforts of all Victorians to ensure that, as a community, we can start the process of reopening safely. 

You may have heard the Premier’s announcement that schools will return to face-to-face learning. It’s important to understand that the Victorian Government doesn’t regard Collarts (or any other higher education provider) as a ‘school’; instead, they have a separate category for higher education. For providers in this category, we will have a more ‘staged’ return to campus.

Here’s what that means for you as a Collarts student:

From Wednesday 28th July, we will be returning priority classes to on-campus delivery on a course-by-course basis.

Your Head of Department will also outline alternative arrangements for those of you who are unable to attend priority classes on campus

These settings are likely to remain in place for the next two weeks, after which time we hope to be in a position to bring back even more classes pending Government advice on this.

  • You can still arrange to ‘click and collect’ equipment you need to borrow for your studies.
  • All students must wear a mask at all times while at Collarts (including while in classes) unless they have a valid exemption.
  • You must check in when you arrive on campus.
  • If you are worried about coming to campus for priority classes, please let us know. You can contact your teacher or Head of Department or support@collarts.edu.au
  • We will ensure there are online options for all units for those students unable to attend in person.

For this initial easing of restrictions, campuses will return to standard opening hours from Wednesday 28th July for priority classes and assessment related room bookings as follows:

Wellington Street and Brunswick Street

  • Monday to Friday: 8:30am – 10pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: 10am to 6pm

George Street and Cromwell Street

  • Monday to Friday: 8:30am – 8:00pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: 10am to 4pm


Remember that there is a range of support packages available to assist you through the Victorian Government and the Australian Government. 
We encourage you to review these packages and apply for whatever support applies to you.

If there’s anything else you need or any concerns you have regarding your studies, please get in touch with us – support@collarts.edu.au is a great place to start.

As always, if you feel at all unwell, we must ask that you do not attend a Collarts campus but instead follow the advice of the Victorian Government, get tested, and isolate until you have a negative result.

We’re excited to have some classes return to campus. We look forward to welcoming more of you back to campus as restrictions continue to ease – and we will continue to do all that we can to ensure your learning experiences online and on-campus are as safe and inclusive as possible.

— BEN O'HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR OF COLLARTS

 

TUESDAY 20 JULY

Dear Collarts students,

As you may already be aware, in response to the developing COVID-19 situation, Victoria will be extending the 'circuit breaker' lockdown action for an extra week.

This lockdown is now due to lift as of 11:59pm Tuesday 27th July.

This means the following for Collarts:

  • All Collarts classes that would normally be held on campus during this period of time will remain with remote delivery.

  • If you would normally attend an on-campus class across the next 7 days, please look out further information from the Head of your course, who will explain how these classes will run remotely, and how you can attend.
  • Our Wellington Street campus will be open for click and collect equipment bookings Monday to Friday, 8:30am – 6:00pm. All other campuses will not be accessible for the duration of this ‘circuit breaker’. If you have a room booking, we will be in touch with you to discuss rescheduling.

Our academic and wellbeing support services will continue to be available, and are ready to offer you Zoom and phone consultations. You can book appointments by emailing support@collarts.edu.au. You can also talk to your course heads, coordinators, teaching staff and student services staff.

We're here to support you, as we move through this hopefully short lockdown. With such a quick and decisive response to this emerging situation, I’m confident we’ll be back on campus next Wednesday.

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 

THURSDAY 15 JULY

Dear Collarts students,

As you may already be aware, in response to the developing COVID-19 situation, Victoria will be moving to a 5-day ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown action, as of 11:59pm tonight (Thursday 15th July).

This ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown is scheduled to finish at 11:59pm on Tuesday 20th July.

This means the following for Collarts:

  • All Collarts classes that would normally be held on campus during this period of time will instead move to remote delivery.

  • If you would normally attend an on-campus class across the next 5 days, please look out for further information from the Head of your course, who will explain how these classes will run remotely, and how you can attend.

  • Our Wellington Street campus will be open for click and collect equipment bookings Monday to Friday, 8:30am – 6:00pm. All other campuses will not be accessible for the duration of this ‘circuit breaker’. If you have a room booking, we will be in touch with you to discuss rescheduling.

Our academic and wellbeing support services will continue to be available, and are ready to offer you Zoom and phone consultations. You can book appointments by emailing support@collarts.edu.au. You can also talk to your course heads, coordinators, teaching staff and student services staff.

We’re here to support you, as we move through the second lockdown of Trimester 2. With such a quick and decisive response to this emerging situation, I’m confident we’ll be back on campus next Wednesday.

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 



 

WEDNESDAY 14 JULY

Dear Collarts students,

The Victorian Government has announced that as of 11:59pm Wednesday 14th July, masks are again mandatory in all indoor spaces. This includes all Collarts campuses, and applies to all students and staff (except where a valid exemption applies).

Please ensure that you wear a mask at all times while you are on campus. If you arrive on campus and release you’ve forgotten your mask, please ask at reception - we have a supply of disposable masks for this reason.

Finally, if you are feeling at all unwell, please do not attend any of the campuses – we ask that you get tested and isolate while awaiting your result. The Head of your course and your teachers will be very happy to catch you up on any classes that you’re unable to attend in this circumstance.

Similarly, please review the list of exposure sites that have been identified through the contact tracing process (a number of new sites were added last night), and if necessary, follow the guidelines there relating to testing and isolation.

As always, we’ll update you on the situation if there are further developments.

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 


 

 

WEDNESDAY 23 JUNE

Dear Collarts students,

I'm pleased to be able to share some good news from today's announcements on the easing of restrictions by the Victorian Government.

As of 11:59pm tomorrow (Thursday 24th June), the Government will remove the "learn from home if you can" requirement for higher education students. This means that as of Friday:

  • Many more classes will able to return to campus.
  • You can make room bookings, even when these bookings do not relate specifically to an upcoming assessment task.
  • You can attend campus to our learning facilities, even when you are out of class.
  • Campuses will return to their pre-lockdown opening hours, including opening on weekends.

Soon you will receive information from the Head of your course, to take you through what these changes mean for you, including which classes will be returning and when.

While this is excellent news, it's important to note that this is not quite a 'return to normal' just yet. There are still a number of restrictions that apply, including the following:

  • You must continue to wear a mask at all times while indoors (including at any Collarts campus) unless you hold a valid exemption.
  • Density limits still apply to shared campus spaces (except classrooms and learning spaces). Please look out for the posted maximum capacity signs, and ensure you are not exceeding these limits.
  • Please do not attend a campus if you are at all unwell, or if you have visited an exposure site. We will continue to provide support for students who are unable to attend on-campus classes to ensure you don't miss out.

You can review the latest changes here, and of course, please stay up to date with the latest health advice, including reviewing the updates to exposure sites, and getting tested if you are at all feeling unwell.

If you have any questions or concerns about the above, please contact us either at support@collarts.edu.au or by reaching out to your Course Head.

We look forward to welcoming you back for a wider range of classes and activities from Friday.

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS



WEDNESDAY 16 JUNE

Dear Collarts students,

As you’ve probably seen, the Victorian Government have announced some further easing of restrictions, as of 11:59pm tomorrow (Thursday 17th June). 

This easing is good news on a personal level for all Victorians, as there have been some significant changes (such as the removal of the 25km limit on travel, the removal of the ‘divide’ between metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria, and changes to limits on public and private gatherings). I’d encourage you to take a look at these changes, which you can find detailed here.

However, it’s important to note that with regard to education and study, no further easing of restrictions was announced. That means that for another week, the directive remains that “if you can learn from home, you must”. 

For Collarts, this means that classes that have already returned to campus will continue to be offered in person, but all other classes will remain in remote delivery for the present time.

We do receive more detailed advice from the Department of Education regarding announced restrictions, usually within 48 hours of the restrictions being shared. We will of course review this detail when we have it to hand, and if this enables us to make further changes, we’ll provide another update at that time.

In the meantime, please continue to engage with your classes in the same way you have done across the last 7 days, and of course, please stay up to date with the latest health advice, including reviewing the updates to exposure sites, and getting tested if you feel at all unwell. 

We’re here of course if we can provide any support for you: contacting support@collarts.edu.au or reaching out to your teachers or course Head, are the best ways to start that process.

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS



WEDNESDAY 9 JUNE

Dear Collarts students,

By now, you've no doubt heard that the Victorian Government have announced an easing of restrictions, to take effect from 11:59pm on Thursday 10th June.

This is very positive news and reflects the great efforts of all Victorians to ensure that as a community, we can start the process of reopening safely.

Here's what that means for you as a Collarts student:

  • From Friday 11th June, we will be returning priority classes to on-campus delivery on a course-by-course basis. Your permitted travel zone extends to 25km from your primary residence, however you can travel beyond 25km for the purpose of education.

  • You can still arrange to ‘click and collect’ equipment that you need to borrow for your studies.

  • Your Head of Department will be in contact with you soon to confirm these priority classes, to provide you with as much notice as possible regarding which classes will be back on campus.

  • Your Head of Department will also outline alternative arrangements for those of you who are unable to attend priority classes on campus. 

  • All students must wear a mask at all times while at Collarts (including whilst in classes) unless they have a valid exemption.

  • You must check in when you arrive on campus.

  • If you are concerned about returning to campus for priority classes, please don't hesitate to reach out to your teacher or Head of Department, or through support@collarts.edu.au. We will ensure that there are still online options available for all units for students who are unable to attend in person.

  • For this initial easing of restrictions, campuses will be open Monday to Friday for priority classes as follows:

    Wellington Street and Brunswick Street: 8:30am - 8:30pm
    George Street and Cromwell Street: 8:30am - 6:30pm
    Collarts cannot take bookings outside of priority classes for the next week.

  • We are anticipating that restrictions will ease further next week, and will aim to bring back even more classes when that happens (bearing in mind we need to follow Government advice on this) 

  • Remember that there are a range of support packages that are available to assist you, through both the Victorian Government and the Australian Government. We encourage you to review these packages and apply for whatever support applies to you.

  • If there's anything else that you need, or any concerns that you have regarding your studies, please contact us at support@collarts.edu.au.

  • As always, if you feel at all unwell, we must ask that you do not attend a Collarts campus but instead, follow the advice of the Victorian Government get tested, and isolate until you have a negative result.

As I wrote above, today's news is very positive, for Victoria and also for Collarts. We're really excited to be able to bring classes back to campus - some right now, and others as restrictions continue to ease - and will do all that we can to ensure your learning experiences online and on-campus are as safe and inclusive as possible.

 

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS


 

WEDNESDAY 2 JUNE

Dear Collarts students,

As you are no doubt aware, the Victorian Government has today announced that owing to developments across the last week, it is necessary to extend the current ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown for another 7 days. This means that the revised end date is now 11:59pm on Thursday 10th June.

This means that all classes will continue remotely for an additional week. Shortly, Collarts students receive further details from their course Head, detailing what this will mean for them. Please read through that information carefully, and if you have any questions about course delivery, don’t hesitate to reach out to your course team.

Collarts launched a range of support packages in 2020, and if there are further lockdown extensions, we will announce similar support packages to help students during these challenging times. I’d also like to draw your attention to the support that the Victorian Government has developed. Please check the link as you may be eligible to access some of these programs.

So, for now, let’s work together in the understanding that for those students who have elected to study on campus, we’ll be back there in just over a week. In the meantime, please stay safe, follow the government advice regarding current restrictions and health information, and help each other out online. We’ll keep working hard to ensure that Collarts remains a safe and supportive place for you to study.

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 


 

 

THURSDAY 27 MAY

Dear Collarts Students

As you may already be aware, in response to the developing COVID-19 situation, Victoria will be moving to a 7-day 'circuit breaker' lockdown action, as of 11:59pm tonight (Thursday 27th May). 

This ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown is scheduled to finish at 11:59pm on Thursday 3rd June

This means the following for Collarts:

  • All Collarts classes that would normally be held on campus during this period of time will instead move to remote delivery. I’d like to reassure you that Collarts has developed a strong track record with this delivery approach across 2020 and 2021, and we are confident that we can deliver an engaging learning experience in this way.

  • If you would normally attend an on-campus class across the next 7 days, please look out for further information from the Head of your course, who will explain how these classes will run remotely, and how you can attend.

  • Our Wellington Street campus will be open for click and collect equipment bookings (is via Cheqroom) Monday to Friday, 8:30am – 6:00pm. All other campuses will not be accessible for the duration of this ‘circuit breaker’. If you have a room booking, we will be in touch with you to discuss rescheduling. 

Collarts recognises that this may be a stressful and difficult time for you all. I remind you that staying engaged in your studies and connected to your peers is one of the best things you can do for your mental health. 

If the last 12 months have taught us anything about the Collarts community, it’s just how supportive and forward-thinking we can be in times of challenge and uncertainty. We’re confident that we know how to make the online/remote learning experience just as powerful as the face-to-face environment. Your classes will continue. Your learning will continue. 

Just as importantly, we know how valuable community and connection can be. We are all here to help you – and that doesn’t change just because we aren’t together on campus. Our academic and wellbeing support services will continue to be available, and are ready to offer you Zoom and phone consultations. You can book appointments by emailing support@collarts.edu.au You can also talk to your course heads, coordinators, teaching staff and student services staff.  

We’ve gone through this before, and we will do it again this time. It’s only 7 days (5 days of classes), and we can’t wait to welcome you back to our campuses on Friday next week. In the meantime, stay safe and we’ll see you online!

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 

TUESDAY 25 MAY

Dear Collarts Students

As you may be aware, the Victorian Government announced earlier today that owing to new cases of local transmission of COVID-19, some restrictions are being reintroduced in Melbourne. 

As of 6:00pm Tuesday 25th May, masks are again mandatory in all indoor spaces. That includes all of our Collarts campuses. This applies to all staff and students (except those with a valid exemption).

Please ensure that you wear a mask at all times while you are on campus. Also, please maintain all of the other COVID Safe practices that we have in place (including checking in when you arrive, regularly sanitizing your hands, observing density limits in shared spaces and maintaining social distancing). If you arrive on campus and realise you’ve forgotten your mask, please ask at reception – we have disposable masks available for this reason.

If you’re on campus today, will still be on site after 6pm, and you don’t have a mask with you, please ask at reception and we can provide you with a disposable mask.

I want to reassure you that we are planning to continue with all classes as scheduled. We have COVID Safe plans and procedures in place, and all of our campuses remain open.

If you have particular concerns about attending the campus at this time, please contact the Head of your course in the first instance to discuss your options. I’d also like to remind you that Collarts academic and wellbeing support services are available and are ready to offer you Zoom and phone appointments. You can book appointments by emailing support@collarts.edu.au  — we’re here to help you.

I’d also like to remind you that masks are mandatory while on public transport, and those who travel without a mask risk a fine.

And finally, if you are feeling at all unwell, please do not attend any of the campuses — we ask that you get tested and isolate while awaiting your result. The Head of your course and your teachers will be very happy to catch you up on any classes that you’re unable to attend in this circumstance. Similarly, please review the list of exposure sites that have been identified through the contact tracing process, and if necessary, follow the guidelines there relating to testing and isolation.

We are monitoring the situation closely and will of course keep you updated with any further developments. 

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 

WEDNESDAY 17 FEBRUARY

 

Dear Collarts Students,

You are no doubt aware, in response to the improving COVID 19 situation, the Government made announcements today to confirm that we will be moving OUT of the 5-day ‘circuit breaker’ conditions as of 11:59pm tonight, Wednesday 17th February. Collarts has been working through the details of this announcement and its effects on our on-campus activities.

I’m pleased to announce that as of tomorrow (18th February), we are able to return to the COVID Safe settings that we had in place prior to this current action.

WHAT THIS MEANS FOR YOU:

  • All Collarts campuses will reopen tomorrow at their usual opening times.
  • All on-campus classes will resume from 8am Thursday 18th February. If you’d normally attend a class on campus, you can expect that to be the case from tomorrow. Please look out for further information from the Head of your course, in case there are other notices specific to your group.
  • Student bookings of our campus spaces are available. Please note that you will need to ensure you have pre-booked spaces before arriving for your booking by contacting bookings@collarts.edu.au.
  • Masks remain mandatory for all students and staff (except for those with valid exemptions, and for teachers while teaching a class) across all campus spaces.
    We do ask that you please only access the spaces that you need to, continue to observe maximum occupancy limits (including in common areas), and continue to follow all health guidelines.

We’ll continue to monitor the announcements from the government and will let you know if there are any further developments.

Finally, I’d like to extend my thanks to all students (and staff) who responded so quickly across the last five days to shift many aspects of the Collarts experience to online and remote. You’ve demonstrated the amazing resilience, adaptability and positivity that we know go to the very heart of succeeding in the creative industries. Of course, if you need academic and/or wellbeing support, we’re here to help you (contact support@collarts.edu.au in the first instance).

This is undoubtedly a trying time, but the skillset and mindset that you’re developing by overcoming these challenges will stand you in good stead for your creative career.

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 

FRIDAY 12 FEBRUARY

 

Dear Collarts Students,

As you may already be aware, in response to the COVID-19 situation, Victoria will be moving to a 5-day ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown action, as of 11:59pm tonight (Friday 12th February).

This ‘circuit breaker’ will finish at 11:59pm on Wednesday 17th February.

THIS MEANS THE FOLLOWING FOR COLLARTS

All Collarts classes that would normally be held on campus during this period of time will instead move to remote delivery. I’d like to reassure you that Collarts has developed a strong track record with this delivery approach across 2020, and we are confident that we can deliver an engaging learning experience in this way.

If you would normally attend an on-campus class on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday, please look out for further information from the Head of your course, who will explain how these classes will run remotely, and how you can attend.

Our campuses will close for the duration of this ‘circuit breaker’. If you have a room booking, we will be in touch with you to discuss rescheduling. I’d encourage you to read the additional information about the ‘circuit breaker’ here.

Collarts recognises that this may be a stressful and difficult time for you all. I remind you that staying engaged in your studies and connected to your peers is one of the best things you can do for your mental health.

We are all here to help you—and that doesn’t change just because we aren’t together on campus. Our excellent academic and wellbeing support services will continue to be available across this time period, and are ready to offer you Zoom and phone consultations. You can book appointments by emailing support@collarts.edu.au. You can also talk to your course heads, coordinators, teaching staff and student services staff.

Finally, I’d just like to say that across the last 12 months, we’ve learnt just how innovative and forward-thinking Collarts really is. We have found ways to open up exciting learning experiences for all students regardless of location, and we’ve done things with technology that make the online/remote learning experience just as powerful as the face-to-face environment.

Let’s work through this together. It’s only 5 days (3 days of classes), and we can’t wait to welcome students back to our campuses on Thursday next week. In the meantime, stay safe and we’ll see you online!

— PROF. tim moss,
dean OF COLLARTS

 

 

MONDAY 14 DECEMBER

 

Dear Collarts students and community,  I am writing to provide a further COVID-19 update. You are no doubt aware that restrictions continue to be lifted across Melbourne and Victoria. Collarts has been working through the details of all of the changing restrictions and its effects on our on-campus activities.

ACCESS OVER THE BREAK

Over the holiday period we are able to open campuses for student bookings. Each campus has different opening hours. In your student emails, there will be more details about campus opening times and how to book coming soon. 

We ask that you only access the spaces that you need to and don’t stay on campus longer than you need to. You will be required to observe social distancing and limited numbers of people allowed in rooms. Where practical we encourage you to wear a mask while on campus. You will be required to sign in on each visit.


ON-CAMPUS CLASSES IN TRIMESTER 1 2021

We are currently reviewing classes and delivery modes for Trimester 1 2021. At the moment, for Trimester 1 at least, in many courses we are looking at ‘blended’ or ‘hybrid’ online and face to face delivery modes. This means that things like lectures are still likely to be delivered online, but workshops and tutorials that require hands-on learning, are more likely to be delivered back on-campus. We are aiming to ensure that most classes can be taken fully online as well, so that we can continue to support our online learners as we have done this year.

We are still working through these plans. We do know that Trimester 1 2021 won’t be the same as we started this year, with more activities taking place online than previously. We’re working hard to find the best balance between bringing back the vibrant Collarts campus community, while still providing you with a safe and flexible learning environment.


FEE-HELP LOAN SCHEME REMOVAL

I am pleased to let you know that the Government has again suspended the 25% FEE-HELP loan fee into 2021. There will be no 25% loan fee applied until Trimester 3 2021 at the earliest. As you consider your enrolment options for 2021, I would urge you to take advantage of this significant opportunity.


Finally, I would like to add that it has been a really tough year. Going into 2020 we clearly had no idea that the year would pan out the way it has. But I have been so incredibly proud and indeed humbled by our staff and students. The resilience that has been shown as well as the determination to get on with teaching and learning in this most difficult year has been quite incredible. I wish you all well with the upcoming results and hope you have a wonderful break and new year. We look forward to seeing you in 2021.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR OF COLLARTS

FRIDAY 30 OCTOBER

 

Dear Collarts students and community, I am writing to provide a further update on the COVID-19 situation.

You are no doubt aware that the Government made announcements this week related to the gradual lifting of restrictions across Melbourne. Collarts has been working through the details of this announcement and its effects on our on-campus activities.

From next week, Monday November 2nd, we are able to open some campuses for student bookings. We have sent a comprehensive list on what is available and how to book directly to our students. We ask our community that you only access the spaces that you need to and don’t stay on campus longer than you need to.

Students will be required to observe social distancing and limited numbers of people allowed in rooms. Where practical, students will need to wear a mask while on campus, and will be required to sign in and out on each visit.

We are currently reviewing Priority 1 classes with the aim to run some of these on-campus before the end of the trimester (for those who elect to return to campus). I should have more news on this next week. We will continue to monitor the announcements from the government and will let you know if there are any further developments.

I would like to wish you the best for the fast approaching assessment period of this trimester. I will provide another update as soon as I am able.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

 


WEDNESDAY 30 SEPTEMBER

Dear Collarts students and community, I am writing to provide a further update on the COVID-19 situation.

You are no doubt aware that on Sunday the Government made announcements related to the gradual lifting of restrictions across Melbourne. Collarts has been working through the details of this announcement and its effects on our on-campus activities.

From next week, Monday 5th October, we are able to open some of our campuses to a very small number of students for access to studios and other student bookings. These are limited to students in a select number of units and only applies to student bookings—not classes.

If you are enrolled in any of the following units you will be able to make a booking into certain studio spaces or the Wellington Street auditorium from next week:

  • Music Production: RST 6
  • Audio Production: RST 6 & Post Production 6
  • Fashion & Sustainability: Fashion Resourcing and Remaking* & Fashion Design: Reinvention*

*For students in the Fashion & Sustainability units, your Head will be in contact with you to explain the induction process that you will need to complete prior to being able to book access to the specialised equipment at the George Street campus.

You will need a travel permit to travel onto campus and you will need to confirm your enrolment in the units above to make a booking. You can make a booking by emailing bookings@collarts.edu.au.

In addition, equipment remains available for loan if required.

We hope that in the coming weeks we will be able to extend student bookings to more courses and more stages of enrolment. We are still hopeful of returning Priority 1 classes to on-campus before the end of the trimester (for those who elect to return to campus).

We will continue to monitor the announcements from the government and will let you know if there are any further developments.

I would like to wish you the best for Trimester 3, so please keep an eye on these emails and I will provide another update as soon as I am able.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

MONDAY 7 SEPTEMBER

 

Dear Collarts students and community, I just wanted to share a brief update. I've written to our students this week, reminding them that Trimester 3 will be delivered online and remotely; just as our Trimester 2 was. 

We have identified some Priority 1 classes that we aim to bring back to campus as soon as possible, but right now we don't know when that's likely to be. We're also running our COVID-19 Study Grants again in Trimester 3, so I'd encourage students to apply for those if they're eligible.

We've also moved our start date forward by just a couple of days, so that those students accessing FEE-Help are able to take advantage of the removal of the 25% Loan Fee from the government. 

Finally, we just want to encourage our students to stay engaged, stay connected, and keep up with their studies during this difficult time. Our wellbeing and support staff are available, so don't hesitate to reach out if you need some help. Thank you. 

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

TUESDAY 4 AUGUST

Dear Collarts students and community, as you are no doubt aware, Melbourne has now entered Stage 4 COVID-19 restrictions. This has an impact on Collarts and our activities for the next 6 weeks. Rest assured that classes will continue online and remotely unaffected.


We will, however, have to temporarily restrict access to our Wellington Street campus from Wednesday this week. You will only be able to attend the campus to collect or return equipment. There will be no studio bookings or room bookings for the rest of Trimester 2. You won’t be able to spend time on campus beyond the time taken to drop off or quickly pick up equipment.

The list below outlines how this equipment borrowing process will work:

  1. Wellington Street will be accessible from 9am-5pm on Monday to Friday only
  2. Students must make an advanced booking to collect or return equipment. You can make a booking by emailing bookings@collarts.edu.au
  3. When you make a booking you will receive a travel permit to come to campus
  4. Remember you must wear a mask onsite at all times and do not attend if you are feeling unwell
  5. Only 1 person will be allowed to collect or return equipment at a time
  6. Additional COVID Work Safe guidelines may be implemented pending additional information from our regulatory bodies.
  7. It is a difficult time for all of us residing in Melbourne and it comes right at the busy time in our Trimester. Don’t forget that if you feel you need some assistance you can always reach out to support@collarts.edu.au

We are hopeful that this 6 week period will set us up for a much closer to ‘normal’ rest of the year and as always, I will keep you up to date with any information that we have to share with you.

Good luck for your upcoming exams and final assessments. Remember to stay engaged and work hard. You will see the rewards in the long run.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR OF COLLARTS

WEDNESDAY 8 JULY

Dear Collarts students and community, as I’m sure you are all aware, Melbourne is moving back into Stage 3 Restrictions from 11:59pm tonight and will stay at those restrictions for at least 6 weeks.

To ensure the safety of our Collarts community, we will continue delivering our face-to-face classes remotely in Trimester 2. We were hoping to bring back some of those Priority 1 classes soon but it appears that is not possible.

The current arrangements (outlined below) will remain in place until at least the start of Trimester 3. We will have an opportunity to reassess the situation over the break. If possible, our Trimester 3 plan is to aim to bring those Priority 1 and 2 classes back to campus and support remote learning for students who are still not prepared to return to campus. We will make an announcement on this closer to the commencement of Trimester 3.

For now the Wellington Street campus remains open for student bookings, library, quiet study space and computer lab access under social distancing rules. Other campuses continue to be available by appointment. We also have equipment available for loans from the Wellington Street campus.

Arrangements relating to assessment, extensions, special consideration and fail grades that were in place in Trimester 1 remain in place for Trimester 2.

I would like to remind you that we are starting Trimester 3 a couple of days early. This is to ensure that students are able to take advantage of the removal of the government's 25% loan fee for those students who access FEE-HELP. Other alterations that we have recently made include the moving of our upcoming Open Day and Orientation to take place online.

We haven’t made any of these decisions lightly and we continue to take every precaution to focus on the health and safety of our students and staff.

As I have said in previous messages, I encourage you stay enrolled and connected over this time. We know that engagement in education at this time is really important for your wellbeing and mental health. Stay focused on your future—when this is over, you will all emerge with incredible skills and experience to share with the world.

You should also not hesitate to reach out to our Wellbeing Support Team and your own networks of support. You can email support@collarts.edu.au for help. Urgent appointments can be made via phone call on 1300 818 777.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

THURSDAY 15 MAY

COLLARTS SHARES FUTURE ACTION PLAN 

Dear Collarts students and community, I am writing to provide an update on the COVID 19 situation and our plans for Trimester 2 commencing May 25th.

To ensure the safety of our Collarts community, we are planning for a very slow and staggered return to campus.

For that reason, Collarts will continue delivering the majority of our face-to-face classes remotely in Trimester 2. We have identified a list of classes that may return to campus if we consider the situation safe to do so, but all other classes will remain online for the whole trimester. You can find the complete list of subjects that may return to campus here.

We do not currently have dates for when this may happen, as we are still monitoring the situation. We will communicate with all students and give them plenty of notice if they are enrolled in one of these classes, and we decide to bring them back on campus.

Priority has been given to classes that are particularly practical, and these will be rolled out in redesigned formats that incorporate social distancing and safety protocols. If these specific classes return to campus, they will continue to be offered in a blended mode for students who do not feel comfortable returning to campus at that time.

We haven’t made these decisions lightly and we continue to take every precaution to focus on the health and safety of our students and staff.

I encourage you to stay enrolled and connected over this time. We know that engagement in education at this time is really important for your wellbeing and mental health. Stay focused on your future—when this is over, you will all emerge with incredible skills and experience to share with the world.

I also want to remind you about the government 25% fee-help loan fee reduction for Trimester 2, and of our $1500 and $300 COVID-19 Study Grants which are only available in Trimester 2. We are still taking applications for the Grants here.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

THURSDAY 7 MAY

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COLLARTS ANNOUNCES COVID-19 STUDY GRANTS

To support new and continuing students for Trimester 2, Collarts has established two COVID-19 Collarts Study Grants. These grants are to support students commencing in T2 who are experiencing academic, financial or personal difficulties due to COVID-19.

There are two key grants available:

 COVID-19 MAJOR HARDSHIP STUDY GRANT 

This grant will be open to future students who have experienced or are currently experiencing major hardship as a result of COVID-19. This could include loss of income, loss of secure housing and/or an inability to access government support.

COVID-19 STUDY RESOURCES GRANT 

This grant is open to future students who would benefit from being able to purchase additional study resources to assist learning from home. This could relate to home study, internet costs, equipment costs, or to cover additional mental health support.

All new and continuing students are encouraged to apply, but they will need to be enrolled in T2 to complete the application.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

MONDAY 27 APRIL

COLLARTS SHARES NEWS FROM FEE-HELP

Dear current and future Collarts students, I am writing to you regarding Trimester 2, 2020 enrolment and tuition fees.

We have been working with the government and our education industry group, IHEA, and I am pleased to let you know that the government is planning a temporary removal of their 25% loan fee for FEE-HELP recipients. This still needs to pass through Parliament, however, we are assured that it will do so.

This means that for Trimester 2, 2020 the FEE-HELP loan fee will not apply if passed, effectively meaning that if you use FEE-HELP you will see a 25% reduction in your overall Trimester 2 study costs. If you use FEE-HELP to pay your course fees, there is nothing that you need to do to take advantage of this, apart from enrolling in Trimester 2 units.

For those students who are eligible for FEE-HELP but choose to pay their fees via upfront payment (Non FEE-HELP), you may wish to take advantage of the loan fee removal and move to FEE-HELP for Trimester 2, 2020 as that may give you access to extra funds at this difficult time. To check if you are eligible to access FEE-HELP, please visit the Study Assist website or if you are a current student, email support@collarts.edu.au

We are continuing to work with the government to determine the situation for Trimester 3. I will write to you in the coming weeks to clarify that position.

I also want to let you know that details of our student COVID-19 support package are still being developed and will be sent to you soon.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

 

FRIDAY 17 APRIL

COLLARTS REASSURES YEAR 12 STUDENTS

I just wanted to take a quick opportunity to address how we are approaching Year 12 students who want to study with us in 2021. We understand that there's plenty of apprehension and uncertainty about how the exam period is going to run and how ATARs will roll out for 2021. 

In short, we want to encourage you to continue to apply to come to Collarts. We don't actually require an ATAR. Here, our entry is done on audition, interview, portfolio submission, and other methods.

We still require you to pass Year 12, but the ATAR is not the principle method of entry at Collarts. All of our auditions and interviews can be done online, and in fact, we've been doing this online for a long time. So there's no disadvantage to students by participating in an online interview or audition. 

There is more information coming up at our Open Day, which will be happening online. You can see more about our Open Day here. I would also encourage you to get in touch with our Future Student Team; they will be able to answer any questions you may have.

So in short, I just want to reassure everyone is wanting to study with us in 2021 that there's no need to change your plans—we'll work with you to ensure you have every possible chance to join us. We wish you well for the rest of the school year. 

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

 


FRIDAY 3 APRIL

COLLARTS OFFERS REMOTE AND ONLINE LEARNING FOR TRIMESTER 2, 2020

Collarts has made the decision that all of our courses in Trimester 2 will continue to be offered online and remotely.

Collarts is embracing new ways for teaching and engaging with students online and I am amazed by how adaptable and positive all of you have been to these changes.

To help everyone understand our approach to learning over this time, we have decided to clearly identify courses which are temporarily being taught online, and courses which will remain available online (in addition to face to face) after COVID-19 has passed and we resume normal business.

    • Courses that are being taught temporarily online during COVID-19 will be classified as ‘Remote Learning’. This means that these classes will resume normal face to face learning when it is safe to do so. If we are able to return to campuses during Trimester 2 we will, but we will ensure that it does not affect students in their studies. This applies to courses: Comedy, Fashion & Sustainability, Entertainment Journalism, Music Performance, and Screen & Media.

    • Courses that will be offered completely online for their whole duration (in addition to face to face) will be classified as ‘Online Learning’. This means that a student may choose to study their whole degree online, or choose a blended model of face to face and online subjects. We are currently working to make a range of our existing courses fully available online for interstate and overseas students, and for local students who find that it suits their lifestyle better. This applies to courses: Interior Design (HE and VET), Animation & VFX, Entertainment Management, Audio Engineering, Music Production, Digital and Social Media, and Fashion Marketing. 

Collarts recognises that it’s a stressful and difficult time for you all.  We are currently working on a support package for students that will be announced in the coming weeks. I remind you that staying engaged in your studies and connected to your peers is one of the best things you can do for your mental health.

We are all here to help you. As we get closer to the major assessment time in the trimester, please remember that our excellent academic and wellbeing support services continue to be available and are ready to offer you Zoom and phone consultations. You can book appointments by emailing support@collarts.edu.au. You can also talk to your course heads, coordinators, teaching staff and student services staff. 

Our Wellington Street campus remains open from 9am–10pm Monday to Friday and 9am–7pm on weekends. Brunswick Street and Cromwell Street continue to be available by appointment only and the George Street campus is temporarily closed. We continue to observe physical distancing guidelines and, limit the number of students allowed in a room at any one time. When booking a room please check the limitations for that room.

I want to take a moment to encourage you all to think about the skills and approaches to learning that you are all engaging with right now. The entire world has moved online in the past 3 weeks and you have been a huge part of that shift.  Employers of the future will look for people who are able to work in these new conditions, to collaborate online and completely engage in an online word. What you do with your time in this defining moment in history will have a huge impact on your future.

Collarts is an innovative place and I’m proud of our staff and students’ ability to quickly adapt to this new environment. We will continue to make improvements and updates. I encourage you to stick with your studies as we get closer to the major assessment time in this trimester.

Collarts continues to monitor the situation and will contact you again if anything changes.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

FRIDAY 27 MARCH

COLLARTS UPDATES CAMPUS HOURS & SERVICES

I am writing to provide further updates on the Collarts response to the COVID-19 situation. There are a few that I want to share at this time:

  • From 10pm on Friday 27th of March we will be reducing the campus opening hours at Brunswick Street and Cromwell Street campuses. They will only be available by appointment. This means students will need to book rooms at least 24 hours in advance if they want to book a room or access any of the resources at these campuses.
  • Our Wellington Street campus remains open from 9am – 10pm Monday to Friday and 9am – 7pm on weekends.
  • Our George Street campus remains closed.
  • We will continue to limit the number of students allowed in a room at any one time. When booking a room please check the new limitations for that room.
  • Over the next week or so we will be communicating with students more about how to make the most of remote learning, where they will see lots of tips and information and ways that they can get support. Some of it will be specific to courses and some will be more general.
  • Collarts academic and wellbeing support services continue to be available to students and are ready to offer you zoom and phone consultations. We encourage students to book appointments. 

I would like to take a moment to acknowledge the amazing work that our staff have done to get your classes up and running for remote learning mode. The work that they have done has been remarkable and inspiring to see, and so I want to take this opportunity to thank them all.

I also want to thank our reception and campus student support staff who are still keeping our campuses open and lending out gear so that students can complete their work. We are down to a very small number of on-campus staff with almost everyone working from home now. Those that have stayed on are doing a superb job and a huge service to us all.

We continue to monitor the situation and will update you if anything changes.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

MONDAY 23 MARCH

COLLARTS UPDATES COVID-19 PROTOCOL

I just wanted to explain that we are still considered an essential service, and although we've transitioned all of our classes to an online delivery mode, we continue to have some of our campuses open for students to access should they wish.

What we are doing, however, is very much limiting the number of students in a room at any one time and the number of people on a campus at any one time. So, students will need to be mindful of this when they're making a room booking, and check with the reception staff as to how many people are allowed in a room.

That's really it for today. We continue to monitor the situation daily, and I will provide you with another update as soon as we have one.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

WEDNESDAY 18 MARCH

ANOTHER IMPORTANT COVID-19 UPDATE FROM THE DEAN

I've written to all of our students informing them that from Monday 23rd March, all of our classes will be run online. We've asked our students not to come into campus, unless they are asked specifically to do so by their lecturer.

For now — and the situation is changing regularly — face-to-face classes will continue until the end of this week, but we've asked all our students to maintain a 1.5 metre distance from each other.

We also understand that our students are feeling anxious and concerned about their assessments and classes and so on for the rest of this trimester. I'd like to assure all of our students that we're working very hard to make sure that we are able to maintain the quality education they are used to and that no student will be disadvantaged in their studies. 

At this stage, we're keeping the campuses open. Students can maintain access to the library, room bookings, studio bookings, and so on, but like I said, classes won't be running on campus.

Finally, a reminder that if you're feeling unwell, or any students are feeling unwell even if they've got a small room booking, they shouldn't come into campus. We'll continue to monitor the situation daily and it is changing regularly, and I will provide an update if anything more develops.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

WEDNESDAY 18 MARCH

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COLLARTS SHARES COVID-19 FAQS

With COVID-19 impacting society at large, there's a lot of uneasiness hanging in the air. That's why Collarts Dean Ben O'Hara and Professor Tim Moss (Associate Dean, eLearning & Innovation) jumped on our Facebook to answer questions about how Collarts is adapting to the situation as it evolves.

Here are the questions you asked and we answered, as well as other Frequently Asked Questions you may have during this difficult time. 


WEDNESDAY 18 MARCH

COVID-19 STUDENT UPDATE FROM DEAN BEN O'HARA

We understand that there are ongoing concerns about the unfolding situation. At this point in time we have decided to take the following actions:

  • From Monday 23rd of March all classes will be running in online mode.  Please do not come to campus for your classes unless specifically advised by your lecturer.
  • You will be hearing from your Department Heads and Teachers soon as to how that will work for each class.
  • For now (and the situation is changing regularly), face-to-face classes will still run for the remainder of this week. I ask you all to maintain a 1.5 meter distance from each other in classroom and other settings.
  • I understand that you may be worried about content and assessments. I would like to assure you that we are working through ways that we will still be able to deliver and assess every subject and maintain the quality of education that you are all used to. You won’t be disadvantaged in your studies.
  • At this stage we are keeping campuses open and students can maintain access to the library,  room bookings, studios and computer labs, but classes will not be running on campus. We will continue to assess this daily.
  • Again, I remind you that if you are feeling unwell you should not be coming into our campuses and we all need to continue to maintain good hygiene practices.

 We continue to monitor the situation and will update you if anything changes.

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

TUESDAY 17 MARCH

LIVE AMA WITH BEN O'HARA & PROF. TIM MOSS

Dean Ben O'Hara and Professor Tim Moss (Associate Dean, eLearning & Innovation) responds to all questions regarding how Collarts life is adapting to the daily COVID-19 changes on a live AMA Facebook post. 


MONDAY 16 MARCH

AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE FROM THE DEAN ABOUT COVID-19

Following the latest Government and Health officials advice, Collarts is open for classes. The public health message is clear that schools and universities are not closing at this time, however rest assured that we have thorough and detailed plans for the continuity of classes in the event of a shutdown.

Like many other institutions, we will be teaching online for a period. This should be as simple as students clicking a link in their email to watch a lecture and take part in a class discussion. There are some classes that are intensely practical, and these may need some adjustment for the period, but we do not want students to miss out on the experiences we offer, so other arrangements will be put in place. 

Over the next week we will continue to work towards transitioning classes to online.  If students decide that they are able to access their class materials online and therefore don’t need to come to classes, they may choose not to.  This is their choice and we will not be penalising students for non-attendance at this time.

Room bookings and after hour operations will continue as normal, however we ask students to limit these books to only include Collarts students and staff.  We are limiting the number of external visitors to our campuses.

We are lucky at Collarts to have a team of teachers who genuinely care about our students and their education and they are working hard to give our students the best possible experience should we be forced to close our campuses for a period. 

If staff or students are feeling unwell, they should stay at home, and should all continue to maintain good hygiene practices.  

I reiterate that our campuses are open, and Collarts continues to operate as usual. We remain aligned with the expert advice of the health authorities and will make further adjustments as necessary. 

We will keep the Collarts community updated with further information as it becomes available. 

— BEN O’HARA,
MANAGING DIRECTOR  OF COLLARTS

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