Failure to report a positive Covid-19 diagnosis by a learner while writing an examination is an offence that carries legal consequences.
That’s according to the guidelines issued by the department of education, which state that it’s a learner’s responsibility to report concerning symptoms to the school authorities in time and to present themselves for testing.
The department further advises parents and learners to report a positive results immediately so that necessary arrangements can be made.
According to the department of education spokesperson in Limpopo, Tidimalo Chuene, this year’s examination is the largest ever to be administered in the province, catering for a total 148,630 candidates.
“The department has put in place measures that will ensure a reputable examination despite its size and the need to strictly adhere to the education sector’s standard operating procedures on the prevention and management of Covid-19,” said Chuene in a statement.
In addition to their stationery, this year’s candidates are armed with a face mask for the duration of their exams, which started on 5 November and conclude on 15 December.
Upon arrival at the examination venue, candidates undergo screening and sanitisation to ensure adherence with the basic education department’s (DBE) protocol for examinations during Covid-19.
Candidates are screened by having their temperatures taken before entering the exam venue. If a candidate’s temperature is 38 degrees Celsius or above, after several scans, the candidate will be able to write their exam in isolation.
If a candidate tests positive for Covid-19, and is deemed fit to write the examination, he or she will be allowed to write at a different venue and under secure conditions that are in compliance with the examination regulations.
The departments will work jointly to ensure that candidates who have been confirmed to be positive are given an opportunity to sit for the exams while ensuring that safety is observed.
Candidates who miss exams due to testing positive for Covid-19 should automatically be registered for the subjects that they have missed, to write during the following May/June 2021 examinations.
Candidates who test positive for Covid-19 and have recovered, as confirmed by a Covid-19 test report, may continue with the writing of the remaining subjects on the timetable.
However, candidates who decide not to continue with the writing of the remaining subjects should be accommodated in the May/June 2021 examinations. In line with the protocols, only the head of department or the delegated official (such as district director), on the advice of the department of health, can authorise the closure of a classroom/examination room or section of a school.
This article was republished from Letaba Herald with permission