Wednesday 16 June 2021
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The "risk is low, it is not zero"


Saturday 16 May 2020

The "risk is low, it is not zero"

Teaching unions have welcomed plans to get primary pupils back in to their classrooms before secondary or post 16 students can return to lessons.

Under plans released by Education, Sport and Culture yesterday, primary schools will reopen to all pupils from the week beginning Monday 8 June.

They won't all be going back at the same time though, with half of each class going in on Monday and Tuesday, with the other half going in on Thursday and Friday, with each school being deep cleaned on Wednesdays.

The phased return is part of plans to ensure social distancing and hygiene standards can be maintained.

Secondary school pupils will continue to be at home distance learning, while some College of Further Education students will be able to return to their campuses from next month.

College of Further Education Delancey Campus

Pictured: Some College of Further Education students will be back on campus from next month.

The NASUWT - The Teachers' Union said the Bailiwick response to education during the pandemic has been very good so far and this strong stance is continuing.

Dr Patrick Roach, the union's General Secretary said:

“Guernsey appears to have performed very well at controlling the virus and the prolonged absence of new cases demonstrates that the time is right to consider the reopening of schools.

“However, it is important to remember that although it appears the risk is low, it is not zero and it cannot yet be said that the virus has been eliminated from the island.

“The States’ proposals for the phased reopening of schools, starting with primary schools, appears to be a proportionate response to the circumstances at hand. It is also right that no arbitrary date for extending either primary provision or reopening secondary provision has been set. This must be done on the basis of scientific advice on when it is safe to do so."

Beaucamp La Mare De Carteret St Sampson Grammar High Schools Collage

Pictured: The four States run mainstream secondary schools will be closed to all but the children of essential workers and vulnerable students for a bit longer.

Dr Roach said unions were consulted before the announcement on Friday and he is satisfied with the procedures put in place so far. 

“The NASUWT is pleased that the union has been consulted prior to this announcement and commitments have been received to continue this engagement, which is also very welcome.

“The Union’s attention now turns to ensuring that sufficient safeguards and risk assessments are in place to protect pupils and staff from infection and to prevent the risk of a further outbreak of the virus from originating in schools.”

Pictured top: La Mare de Carteret Primary school and others will reopen to more students from 8 June, but the high school will remain closed to all but the children of essential workers or vulnerable students. 

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