“We will have had 33% of our schools that have exceeded 80% saliva screening consent tested in preparation for a return to in-classroom learning,” Premier David Burt said, adding that the “Ministry is currently discussing plans to have these schools opened on a staggered basis.”
The Education Ministry had previously announced that “at least 80% of the school population has to have a negative result before a school can reopen. Failure for 80% of the school population to test negative will result in continued remote learning for that school.”
Speaking at last night’s [Oct 6] press conference, Premier Burt said, “Our primary goal as the government remains to get students back into the classroom as soon as possible. Pre-return testing has commenced this week, with preschools and primary schools that have received over 80% consent from parents for their children to be part of the regular saliva screening programme.
“The schools that have been tested this week include; Lagoon Park Preschool, Southampton Pre-school, and St. Paul’s Preschool, which were tested on Monday. The Ministry is currently discussing plans to have these schools opened on a staggered basis, beginning as early as tomorrow.
“Gilbert Institute, West Pembroke Primary School, and Port Royal Primary were tested on Tuesday.
“As of yesterday, East End Primary, Purvis Primary, Victor Scott Pre-School, Prospect Primary, and Success Academy Robert’s Avenue reached 80% consent and will be tested starting tomorrow, Thursday 7 October. This means we will have had 33% of our schools that have exceeded 80% saliva screening consent tested in preparation for a return to in-classroom learning.
“Once a school reaches over 80% consent, testing is arranged. The results and data received from the tests will help determine when a school can return to in-classroom learning. The schools are aware of those who have not signed up for the regular saliva screening and are making contact with parents directly to discuss. Parents who would like to know the consent level of their child’s school are able to contact the school principal directly.
“We can all assist our students and teachers by doing what we can to contain this outbreak, get our schools back open, and to keep them open safely. Vaccinations remain one of the best and most effective ways we can protect ourselves and others. I am grateful that we continue to see an increase in registrations for the vaccine.
“The more people who get vaccinated, the more community protection we will have against the highly contagious Delta Variant. The presentation from the Chief Medical Officer earlier certainly outlined some of the data surrounding those matters. If you have questions or concerns, or if you are considering getting the vaccination, please speak to your doctor and discuss if it is medically safe for you to do so.”