South Africa

Thousands of SA primary schools ‘unable to fully reopen’ on Monday 2 August

The resumption of primary school learning on Monday 2 August is now facing some serious disruption – after thousands of facilities across the country confirmed that they ‘cannot fully reopen’ while the current lockdown laws are in place.

Will primary schools reopen on Monday 2 August?

It’s understood that the demand for all learners to be seated one metre apart is still too much for some classrooms. Schools with large volumes of children in each learning group cannot accommodate everyone, and a large number of educational centres won’t be able to welcome all students back in one go.

Trouble is brewing, though. As The Sunday Times report, teaching unions have been told that ‘a full capacity return for primary schools’ should continue – even if some places aren’t able to maintain physical distancing between pupils.

Where will Primary Schools be closed?

This presents a very serious issue for the Department of Basic Education, who are fighting tooth and nail to ensure that our youngsters have the best possible chance of learning productively while in the classroom.

The problems for Grade R to 7, however, continue to cause headaches in several major regions.

Level 3 lockdown laws are set to be reviewed later in August. A move down to Level 2 may allow the DBE some leeway with how schools are allowed to operate, as more teachers and senior school staff continue to receive their vaccines.

However, the government’s decision to cut social distancing requirements from 1.5 metres to one metre still doesn’t go far enough for some schools – and, like most things during this pandemic, this will hurt poorer communities the most.

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