Several schools in Kingston and St Andrew added to the list of educational institutions that officials have decided to keep close on Monday as heavy rains continue to lash sections of the island.
Ministry of Education and Youth in a release over the weekend had advised that students in the eastern parishes of St Thomas, Portland, and St Mary which makes up Region 2, should remain at home on Monday, September 26.
But while no official release was sent out for those schools in Kingston and St Andrew, officials at several Kingston schools say they have been monitoring the weather conditions and informing parents via their own Whatsapp groups to stay home as heavy rains associated with Tropical Storm Ian continue to affect a number of areas.
Vauxhall High School in Kingston was one of those institutions.
“Due to continuous rain which has caused flooding in some communities please be advised that we will not have face-to-face classes today, Monday, September 26,” school officials posted via their WhatsApp group.
The school officials said they will assignments using their online platforms.
Students attending grade six classes in Pembroke Hall primary were given similar instructions and there are indications that teachers in other classes may follow.
In a statement Sunday evening, the ministry said the report from Region 2 indicates that based on the adverse weather conditions which disrupted electricity, worsened road conditions and caused flooding in some areas, students should remain at home and work remotely as previously advised in Bulletin-133/2022, entitled “Severe Weather Alert.”
The ministry said that while reports from Region 5 (St. Elizabeth and Manchester) do not indicate significant cause for concern, school boards and principals are advised to make use of both remote learning and only use face-to-face where conditions allow.
Meanwhile, the ministry said that based on the situational update from the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management and the Meteorological Office, schools can open for face-to-face classes where conditions are safe.
“Based on reports from our seven regions as to the impact of the weather conditions in their locality, boards and principals are being advised to exercise caution in determining the operations of schools for Monday, September 26,” the statement said.
It urged school administrators to use their communication channels to communicate with all parents, students and staff to advise of the operations of schools based on their local situation.
“All staff and parents should exercise their best judgement, paying special attention to self-care and safety in all circumstances,” the