The Ministry’s new strategy for addressing COVID-19 in the schools has received mixed reception from parents. Minister of Education, Ms. Dee-Ann Kentish-Rogers, provided some clarity surrounding the strategy, and offered feedback on its implementation.
Speaking at the Government’s press conference on Monday, January 24, 2022, Ms. Kentish-Rogers explained: “[Prior to using this approach], our strategy would have been to test students who would have been contacts of persons testing positive. If a student tested positive, all students and teachers from that student’s classroom would have been asked to isolate, causing major disruption to face-to-face education. Therefore, a new strategy was put in place.
“The new strategy, based on UK guidance and student seating charts, includes the testing of students who have been identified as contacts of positive students or teachers. These contacts would be asked to go home for a period of seven days.
“The contacts have two choices, either to stay at home in isolation for the seven days, or return to school and submit to be tested for the seven-day period. During that time, students [contacts] would remain at school for as long as their tests are negative.”
She continued: “There has been a suggestion that we move to a four-day test for the students [contacts]. This would require contacts to remain in isolation for four days and return to school on day five if they have a negative test.”
Ms. Kentish-Rogers also spoke about a new initiative – Brave the Rage Programme – implemented at the Albena Lake-Hodge Comprehensive School – to promote a more positive, peaceful and focussed school environment.
On Wednesday, January 26, and Thursday, January 27, parents and guardians were invited to attend an important parent session with international Brave the Rage trainer, Ms. Julie Wilkinson. The session was intended to help parents explore solutions to bullying, anger and anxiety, and ways to promote personal wellbeing.