The Department of Basic Education has urged school principals to ensure all health protocols on the management of COVID-19 are strictly followed.
This comes after the department successfully opened schools earlier this month in a new and unfamiliar environment.
The department said while it is facing rising records of infections, the advice from health experts and advisors is that as a country we need to live side by side with the virus.
The department issued directions on 23 June 2020 in which the 6th of July 2020 was confirmed as the date for the return of learners in other grades back to school.
Schools have been temporarily closed and reopened around the country in the past three weeks to allow affected areas to be disinfected.
“This has understandably caused panic and anxiety. Schools are an integral part of society and a reflection of its community. Schools just like clinics, shops, police stations, mines and other frequently visited places, have found themselves also having to close and reopen.
“This is in response to infections identified during the screening process and in line with health protocols on how to treat an environment with possible contamination,” the department said in a statement.
Principals are urged to take the following measures:
- Ensure that learners and employees are screened when the schools reopen using the Department of Health COVID-19 procedure and questionnaire.
- Learners and employees should report any of the following additional symptoms: body aches, loss of smell or loss of taste, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, fatigue, weakness or tiredness;
- Ensure that learners and employees are informed, trained and instructed as to the correct use of cloth masks; and
- Ensure that a risk assessment is conducted to identify categories of employees requiring Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Those employees should be provided with the accredited PPE in accordance with Department of Health guidelines.