January 3, 2022
Minister must revisit COVID plan so schools can remain open safely – Sheehan

Sinn Féin MLA Pat Sheehan has called on the education minister to urgently revisit her approach to managing COVID in our schools so they can remain open safely in the New Year. 

The party’s Education Spokesperson said: 

“Principals have been open and honest in describing the deterioration of the situation in many of our schools due to COVID. 

“So far, a lack of appropriate guidance, a lack of adequate safety mitigations, a soft touch contact tracing policy, and a lack of available substitute teachers have put many of our schools in difficult positions with many resorting to partial closure last term.

“I put these concerns directly to the Minister and called on her to produce a comprehensive plan which puts HEPA filters in all classrooms, which sets out a contact tracing policy teachers and families can have confidence in and to speed up the redeployment of qualified teachers from non-pupil facing positions back into the classroom. 

“The Omicron variant also presents new challenges. 

“I will continue to make the case to the Minister to revisit her approach to COVID in schools to make our classrooms safer and so they can remain open in the New Year.” 

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