Sinn Féin MLA Pat Sheehan has welcomed the Assembly’s support for his motion calling on the education minister to produce a plan to keep pupils, teachers and other staff safe in our schools.
The party’s education spokesperson said:
“Today, we recalled the Assembly to give pupils, parents and school staff a voice and to challenge the DUP education minister on the lack of a clear plan for a safe return to school.
“A lack of clear guidance and adequate safety mitigations, a soft-touch contact tracing policy and shortage in substitute teachers has put many schools in difficult positions, forcing some to partially close.
“I challenged Minister McIlveen to produce a plan which puts HEPA filters in all classrooms, alongside a contact tracing policy that teachers and families can have confidence in.
“We also need to see the redeployment of qualified teachers who are currently working outside the classroom sped up to address teacher shortages.
“The education minister must act now to support the safe re-opening of our schools.”