Events Impacted by COVID-19

In light of the fast-moving changes enacted by the government relating to COVID-19 (Coronavirus), we have regrettably made the following decisions regarding BST events, and events being held onsite in coming weeks and months:

  • OMF Conference – CANCELLED
  • ‘Preaching to the Heart Seminar’ – POSTPONED until Second Semester
  • David Reimer’s ‘Reading Joshua Today’ MTS course – ONLINE ONLY
  • Centre for Asian Christianity Vision Dinner – POSTPONED until Second Semester
  • CAC ‘Culture, Chaos & Christ’ Conference in Sydney – POSTPONED until Second Semester
  • Israel Study Tour – POSTPONED to 2021
We recognise these changes will create a great deal of inconvenience, but as you can appreciate, it is imperative that take every precaution to maintain the safety of our students, staff, faculty and residents, and ensure that the college is able to continue to deliver learning to students without interruption. Thank you for your understanding. If you have any questions relating to these event changes, please contact our office on info@bst.qld.edu.au.

18 March, 2020

Library – Closed to Public

In order to minimise risk to our students and residents, we have closed our library to the public until further notice. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and thank you for your understanding.

18 March, 2020

Lectures Live-Streaming on Zoom

As of this week, our lectures are available online as a livestream. Students not wishing to (or not able to) attend classes at the college can access this coursework through Zoom.

 

Please note that these lectures are not being recorded, and attendance during the lecture is mandatory as part of your regular curriculum; your lecturer will be taking a roll as usual to ensure your attendance.

 You can find instructions on how to use Zoom here.

Thank you for your cooperation and continued dedication to your studies. We greatly appreciate your commitment!

18 March, 2020

Food Service & Community Lunches

As part of Brisbane School of Theology’s ongoing commitment to managing the potential of a Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak on the college campus, as of today, Monday 16th March 2020, the college will cease to serve any food as part of the college calendar. This will include, but not be exclusive to, Tuesday and Friday community lunches, lecture day morning teas and suppers, as well as extracurricular events held by BST or by partner organisations on the college premises that might offer meals or refreshments as part of the program.

This will also include the consumption of food that is prepared off campus to be brought on campus and distributed.

Morning tea will still take place in the dining room (drinks only) and lunch on the lawn or in the student common room, but lunch will now be a ‘Bring Your Own’ affair, so please come prepared with your own meal.

Naturally, residents will be able to prepare food as per usual for consumption in their accommodation, and will still be able to offer hospitality in their homes.

We believe that this is something we can do that will contribute to a more positive outcome. We apologise for any inconvenience that this may cause to our community and partner organisations, and appreciate your cooperation as the situation unfolds.

16 March 2020 

Government Updates

On Sunday, the Federal Government issued a number of new directives relating to COVID-19. The latest information, as of 15 March 2020, can be found here. We would encourage you to read through this fact sheet, as it touches on issues like ‘social distancing’, hygiene, how to self-isolate, and more. In particular, All people who arrive in Australia from midnight 15 March 2020, or think may they have been in close contact with a confirmed case of coronavirus, are required to self-isolate for 14 days.”

As of 15 March, the government has also advised that people no longer shake hands, and generally try to maintain comfortable distance between individuals (at least 1.5m). 

Diagnosis

If you become unwell and think you may have symptoms of Coronavirus, seek 
medical attention immediately. Call ahead to make an appointment with a doctor. Tell your doctor about your symptoms, travel history and any recent close contact with someone who has Coronavirus.

If you must leave home to see your doctor, wear a surgical mask (if you have one) to protect others. Avoid contact with others until a diagnosis is made; then follow medical advice.

Treatment
If you have been diagnosed with Coronavirus, or are awaiting a diagnosis, isolate yourself in your home.

How to isolate yourself:

  • Do not go to public places, such as work, church, school, shopping centres, childcare or university. If possible, ask other people to get food and other necessities for you and leave them at your front door.
  • Only people who usually live with you should be in your home. Do not let in visitors.
  • You do not need to wear a mask in your home.
  • If you need to leave home to seek medical attention, wear a surgical mask (if you have one) to protect others.       

16 March 2020 

BST Action on Coronavirus

One of the most important elements in reducing the spread of Coronavirus is in our taking it seriously, having basic understanding, and taking care not to contract or spread it. Below is helpful information and advice adapted from State and Federal health authority websites. Please read it carefully.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness caused by a new virus.  Symptoms range from a mild cough to pneumonia, including fever, flu-like symptoms such as coughing and a sore throat, and shortness of breath.

Some people recover easily; others may get very sick very quickly. There is evidence that it spreads from person to person through:

  • close contact with an infectious person
  • contact with droplets from an infected person’s cough or sneeze
  • touching objects or surfaces (like doorknobs or tables) that have cough or sneeze droplets from an infected person, and then touching your mouth or face

Prevention
Surgical masks in the community are helpful only in preventing people who have Coronavirus disease from spreading it to others. If you are well, you do not need to wear a surgical mask as there is little evidence supporting the widespread use of surgical masks in healthy people to prevent transmission in public.

Everyone should practice good hygiene to protect against infections. Good hygiene includes:

  • washing your hands often with soap and water. This process should take 1 minute, and include 40 seconds of washing hands, under fingernails, between fingers, the backs and palms and forearms, and 20 seconds to dry well, preferably with disposable paper towel.
  • using a tissue and covering your mouth when you cough or sneeze
  • avoiding close contact with others, such as touching.

You should also try and stay at least one metre away from people coughing or sneezing.

Diagnosis
If you become unwell and think you may have symptoms of Coronavirus, seek medical attention immediately. Call ahead to make an appointment with a doctor. Tell your doctor about your symptoms, travel history and any recent close contact with someone who has Coronavirus.

If you must leave home to see your doctor, wear a surgical mask (if you have one) to protect others. Avoid contact with others until a diagnosis is made; then follow medical advice.

Treatment
If you have been diagnosed with Coronavirus, or are awaiting a diagnosis, isolate yourself in your home.

How to isolate yourself:

  • Do not go to public places, such as work, church, school, shopping centres, childcare or university. If possible, ask other people to get food and other necessities for you and leave them at your front door.
  • Only people who usually live with you should be in your home. Do not let in visitors.
  • You do not need to wear a mask in your home.
  • If you need to leave home to seek medical attention, wear a surgical mask (if you have one) to protect others.       

At this stage there is no need to cancel any events or gatherings or take additional precautions for normal practice.  However, people who are unwell should not attend public events such as lectures.

6 March 2020

Coronavirus Update

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is now in the capital cities of Australia. There has been a case in Toowong. We are very conscious of the risk to the BST community and are acting to protect the students, residents, faculty and staff, while attempting to maintain community and academic life as much as possible.

This week the Australian College of Theology gave permission for face-to-face teaching to be conducted by live streaming until the end of semester 1:

. . . granting . . . permission for colleges to arrange for students enrolled in attendance-based units who contact their college expressing concern about infection with COVID-19 through attending face to face lectures [to] attend the lecture components of those units through online video format.

Accordingly, from week 5 (16 March), BST will have the capacity via the Zoom facility to include in lectures students who are not in the college lecture room. We will soon provide information to students about how to join these Zoom meetings.

Our desire is to continue lectures and other activities at college for as long as possible while it seems safe. At present there is no specific cause for concern at BST. Provided you are physically well and are not concerned about contracting Coronavirus at college, we ask that you attend lectures as usual. If you have a strong concern about contracting Coronavirus at college, we encourage you to use Zoom to join lectures. And if you think that you may have contracted Coronavirus, or have been diagnosed with it, please do not attend the college; please inform us about your health.

We are now watching the situation carefully on a daily basis, and will make changes to the operation of the college as we consider necessary. Mr Jonny Lush has been appointed the Coronavirus contact person. Please direct information, questions and concerns to him via our centralised email of info@bst.qld.edu.au.

 

Please note:

  1. Our Residential Chaplain & Property Manager, Jonny Lush, will contact the college residents about protections and procedures for residents.
  2. Personal and public-space hygiene will be a major priority. Hand sanitiser will be located at a number of places around the college. Please familiarise yourself with, and practise, hygiene directions which are circulating on the Internet from government and health agencies.
  3. Extra key resources (e.g. chapters from frozen books) will be uploaded to Moodle so that students unable to use, or concerned about using, the library have access to resources to assist them. We will seek to increase the number of eBooks available. We encourage you to make full use of eBooks and other electronic resources. The librarian will also review borrowing rights and provide information about this.
  4. Tutoring will be available at college and also by Zoom and other facilities.
  5. We will inform you about the cancellation of activities and events, should the need arise.

The safety and health of everyone in our community is of vital concern to us. At present we are taking sensible precautions, but we are not alarmed, and we are taking steps so that your health and your studies will not be negatively impacted. Thank you for working with us toward that end. We will be praying and trusting the Lord.

Warm regards from the BST staff and faculty.

6 March 2020
N.B. This site will be updated regularly with any new information regarding any impact from COVID-19 on our day-to-day operations.

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