UPDATE 28/01 - The planned strike has been put on hold while negotiations continue. 

ORIGINAL 25/01 - Two-thirds of SA teachers have voted to strike when school resumes. 

A majority of respondents to a recent survey said they would take a day's strike action when face-to-face classes resume on February 2.

Meanwhile, the Australian Education Union has been in discussion with the Department of Education, seeking new measures to ensure a safe learning environment for both students and staff.

“The main sticking points at the moment is the significant disparity that exists between the eastern states and South Australia with regard to the regime around rapid antigen testing,” Australian Education Union SA branch president Andrew Gohl said this week. 

“Other issues include leave provisions, particularly for those who are vulnerable, and working from home arrangements for those vulnerable workers as well, and particularly those workers that may be going home to family members that may be immunocompromised.”

The union also wants new strategies to reduce high workloads for staff and clarity from the Education Department on staff working face to face and online simultaneously. 

Education Minister John Gardner has defended a decision not to introduce COVID-19 surveillance testing for teachers using rapid antigen tests (RATs), saying advice from Chief Public Health Officer Nicola Spurrier did not call for it. 

Talks will continue this week. 

“We're really looking forward to an opportunity to ask these sorts of questions around the role of rapid antigen testing and really the difference between [eastern] states and South Australia,” Mr Gardner said.

“Omicron is the same version of COVID that's so easily spread between the two states. I don't think there's a difference when you cross the border.

“Our students, our teachers are going to be exposed to Omicron over the next couple of weeks and that's going to have an impact on the way that preschools and schools will run.”