The Minister of Basic Education is set to meet with the National Command Council regarding the reopening of schools following their closure. Ahead of her address, some parents have expressed concern about sending kids to school while others have supported the move. Other groupings in the education sectors like Sadtu have questioned the state of readiness of the department to reopen schools safely with SADTU saying they will advise their members not to return to the classrooms before the correct safety precautions are put in place.
Also Read: School closures: What’s the latest update?
These are the issue that parents are hoping the Minister will address:
How do you social distance in overcrowded classrooms?
“How are they going to keep the kids socially distanced in overcrowded classrooms and where is the money coming from to sanitize the classrooms every day. These are just 2 of many questions I have…”- Paddy Hogan
What about kids who live with people in high-risk categories?
“I’m extremely concerned about sending my kids back to school not only for their own safety but also because my husband has a compromised immune system due to cardiac disease. Question, if we decide to have our kids repeat the year will their places be kept if we continue to pay school fees? “-Tanya Marwing George
What about kids who go to government schools but are either not able or don’t want to go back to school?
“How are kids who, once schools are open, can’t go back because they do for instance live with high-risk family members or as their parent I just don’t believe it worth taking the risk. Do I even have a right as a parent of a child in a public school to refuse that my child goes back? What alternative options is the government providing for those instances? Or if I refuse will that mean my child will forfeit learning because there are little options with regards to distance/online learning for children in public schools, especially in the townships here.”- Phindi Khoza
Who will be monitoring that once schools open, they actually adhere to coronavirus precautions?
“Under normal circumstances, our country is famous for having great policies on paper and zero implementation so how will the department ensure that schools are adhering to the coronavirus precautions that they set out. I feel very uncomfortable leaving the safety of my child in the hands of school officials who are possibly also confused themselves as to what they need to do.”- Phiwo Sethuntsa