Term 2 2020 is certainly going to look different for Queensland schools, with confirmation that students should learn from home where possible until at least week 5. What does this mean for tuckshops? As with many things right now, there is no one size fits all approach. We encourage you to discuss the best approach with your tuckshop staff, management and Principal. We have outlined options and considerations in this fact sheet.
We will continue to update this page with developments, so please check back regularly for new resources and information.
No matter what tuckshop looks like for you this term, QAST is here to provide support. We know some tuckshop convenors will be looking for work at home to keep them busy, others might be flat out keeping young children entertained or caring for relatives during this time. We do not want to pressure anyone to take on more than they feel able to, but would like to support those who have the ability to tackle tuckshop related tasks or who are still open in some capacity. In this section we have included articles from our recent eNewsletters that provide options that you may choose to explore and implement, this information is available to members and non-members. In the members only section you will find a variety of resources to to assist you with the task of getting the tuckshop up and running again to meet the needs of your school communities.
COVID-19 and Food Businesses
Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has developed an information hub for food businesses. Key points:
- There is no evidence that COVID-19 is transmitted through food
- Maintaining good hygiene practices is recommended
- Anyone with suspected symptoms of respiratory illness should avoid preparing food for other people
- Businesses need to follow any social distancing requirements requested by the government
Tuckshops should be vigilant in ensuring staff have been appropriately trained in food safety and are following appropriate procedures. Contact the QAST team if you have any food safety related questions. Read More
COVID-19 Support for Employers & Employees
The Australian Government has announced two key schemes that may be helpful to support your tuckshop’s business operations at this time.
This allowance is for $1500 per fortnight for each employee engaged as full-time, part-time or long-term, regular casuals as at 1st of March 2020. The business needs to show a 30% decline in turnover. For full details of the scheme, including eligibility please visit Australian Treasury website
Boosting Cash Flow for Employers
This scheme will provide temporary cash flow support for small and medium businesses and not for profit organisations. Full information is available via the ATO website.
Working from Home
If your tuckshop is currently closed, your employer may ask you to work from home. We know tuckshop convenors are always busy, and often complete paperwork in their own time. Now is a great opportunity for you to get on top of all your tuckshop paperwork and ‘to do list’, particularly if you are being paid to work from home through JobKeeper scheme.
We have also created the attached fact sheet with suggestions of tasks tuckshop staff can be working on from home. Read more about working from home tasks.
Weekly Live Chats – each Monday at 2pm
Across Term 2, the QAST team will be running a session each Monday at 2pm on a key topic. These sessions are primarily designed to give those working from home suggestions on tasks to complete that week, but all are welcome to tune in. Sessions will be run either on Facebook Live or Zoom conferencing, depending on the depth of information to be covered during the session. Recordings of Zoom sessions will be made available after each session. The proposed schedule for Term 2 is available here. Some topics may change depending on developments and feedback from participants.
QAST are also delivering our Pathway to Profit and Convenor Course in virtual formats from Term 2. Visit our training page for more details.
Weekly live chat recordings:
Tuckshop Takeaway Service for Families
QAST has been in touch with the Department of Education and Queensland Health regarding opportunities for the tuckshop to provide a service for families of essential workers. This could include providing family meals on a takeaway basis, as well as regular tuckshop orders for staff and students attending school. This would need approval from your Principal and tuckshop management.
Queensland Health Food Safety Standards team advise that if you are in a state school you are not required to hold a food licence. To comply with relevant legislation, a family meal service can only be provided to people picking up from the tuckshop, a delivery service is not permitted. You can speak with your local Queensland Health unit if necessary. If you are in a private school, you will need to check the conditions of your Food Licence with the local council to determine if takeaway meals are an option.
There are a number of considerations if you wish to set up a safe and effective takeaway meals service. We have created the attached fact sheet to address the key issues.
See details under option 3 of this fact sheet.
Reopening the Tuckshop and Social Distancing
Now that students are gradually starting to return to schools, tuckshops will start to get more and more customers. To help you comply with social distancing requirements we have prepared ‘How do I manage service time during Covid-19’ fact sheets for both primary and high schools.
At this time, it’s important for us all to take care of ourselves and each other, and stay connected. In this article we talk about how best to support each other, and how to effectively work from home.
ABC has written a great article on how to work from home whilst also managing young children. We know this is a challenge for many, and we all need to be patient, manage our expectations and not compare ourselves to others who may appear to have it all under control on social media.
Re-connect with your Volunteers
Now is a great time to re-connect with your volunteers, if you have the time and ability to do so. In this article we make some suggestions on how to re-connect and stay connected with your volunteers.
Topics you will find in the Members Section
- Cleaning your Tuckshops prior to re-opening
- Ongoing cleaning and food safety
- Menu Planning and eMenu
- Connecting with your Suppliers
- Re-engaging with your Volunteers