The Department of Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga has announced that schools in South Africa will be reopened from the 1st of June.
Minister Angie Motshekga said the new school calendar will be released shortly to show the starting dates and reopening of schools will start with Grade 7 and Grade 12 learners, with other grades to be phased in overtime.
The Minister said that teachers are set to return on 25 May so that they have enough time to prepare for the first batch of students by the 1st of June.
According to Angie Motshekga, the Department of Basic Education is working closely with the Health Department to issue guidelines that can be used to manage underlying conditions such as comorbidities and ensuring that schools have access to water.
“We also urge parents to work closely with schools to ensure that learners with pre-existing illnesses are assisted,” said Motshekga.
Opinion: Why reopening Schools is a huge risk
In as much as the Department of Basic Education has taken some measures in trying to make sure that there aren’t any dangers to reopening schools, it remains a bleak picture practically as we are already noticing the negative effects in other countries that have taken the same road about to be taken by South Africa.
France has recorded 70 new cases of Covid-19 in schools that were allowed to reopen last week according to the country’s minister of education.
France closed its school and higher education institutes from March 17 as part of the country’s measures to contain the country’s coronavirus outbreak.
France had recorded over 180,000 coronavirus cases and more than 28,000 deaths as of May 18.
The situation with France should give South Africa and other countries a clear understanding of what will happen if lockdown restriction is loosened up. The new cases in Schools can skyrocket by a great margin due to possible social distancing rules being broken due to crowded schools in and around South Africa.
Despite social distancing measures in classes, some kids have caught the disease and the first cases reported could multiply within a short space of time.