'We want to save lives': Schools reopening plan lacks clarity, says Cork-based education leader

'We want to save lives': Schools reopening plan lacks clarity, says Cork-based education leader

NEW guidelines issued on the reopening of secondary schools have been labelled as “really, really vague” by the president elect of the ASTI, Cork woman Ann Piggott.

She said the lack of clarity on physical distancing and mask wearing in secondary schools is not good enough.

Ms Piggott welcomed funding and the announcement that more than 1,000 teachers would be hired but added that she would have liked to have seen temperature checks introduced on arrival at school and perspex screens erected between student’s desks.

“There is a serious contagious disease. We want to save lives, and I think we should have as many measures as we need in schools,” she told The Echo.

However, INTO president, Cork-based Mary Magner has complimented the plans in place for primary schools, calling them “practical”.

“This roadmap provides certainty and reassurance to people and to those who are vulnerable, including special education pupils and anyone with underlying conditions or anybody who’s anxious,” Ms Magner added.

Head of education at Fórsa Andy Pike, which represents over 13,000 special needs assistants has welcomed the Government’s financial package.

However, he warned that some children “display very challenging behaviours, which could be exacerbated by anxiety provoked by the introduction of safety measures aimed at protecting students and staff” and added that more work was also needed on infection control training for SNAs.

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