Sunday, July 19, 2020

Is School a Covid Risk?

The reopening of schools in 22 European countries has not led to any significant increase in coronavirus infections among children, parents or staff, a videoconference meeting of education ministers from around the EU has heard.

With a debate raging in the UK over the risks of allowing children back into the classroom, some member states are planning summer lessons to aid pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Of the 22 countries where schools have reopened in waves over the last month, 17 have only allowed children to return to kindergarten settings, primary schools and final years of secondary level as part of a tentative lifting of the lockdowns imposed to tackle the coronavirus pandemic....

The vast majority of the reopened schools have been open for just a fortnight, however, prompting Blaženka Divjak, the minister for education in Croatia, which holds the EU’s rolling presidency, to suggest that the positive results need to be treated with some caution.

Denmark became the first European country to tentatively reopen its nurseries, kindergartens and primary schools on 15 April after a month-long closure despite significant resistance from parents who accused the government of treating their children as “guinea pigs”.

Divjak, speaking in a press conference at the end of the meeting of ministers, said the lack of significant increase in cases or any other negative impact should also be seen in the context of the special measures taken to make schools as safe as possible.

Better immune systems, perhaps?

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