Know the procedures
According to an article published by the SA Government News Agency (SAnews.gov.za) all schools will need to comply with COVID- 19 school guidelines contained in a Standard Operating Procedures Booklet supplied by the Basic Department of Education.
COVID-19 school guidelines for all schools
According to the Covid-19 school guidelines, all learners and staff members will be screened daily. Those with raised temperatures, will then be considered for isolation and testing.
- Learners will have to wash or sanitize their hands before entering classrooms.
- At the start of every school day classrooms will be sanitized.
Social distancing plans
The Covid-19 school guidelines cover distancing in class, outside of class, in transport and more. See Transport below.
- No more than two learners may share a desk, with no hugging or handshaking.
- Extra classes should be arranged in small groups that maintain social distancing.
- Movement of learners between classes will also be limited.
Learners and teachers will be expected to wear cloth masks at all times.
COVID-19 School Transport
- Vehicles that transport children will undergo sanitisation prior to the start of all trips.
- All passengers to wear a mask and sanitise their hands on entering the vehicle.
- Distance between learners in the buses has also been proposed as a measure.
All sports matches, choral practices and festivals, eisteddfods will be prohibited.
What can you do as a parent to ensure your child’s safety at school?
We spoke to Professor Shaheen Mehtar, an infection prevention and control specialist at Stellenbosch University and head of the IPC unit at Tygerberg Hospital, Cape Town.
Here’s a summary of Professor Mehtar’s advice:
- Explain hand hygiene to your child. This means washing hands frequently, and especially before and after eating, after using the toilet, and after touching any dirty surface.
- Teach your child how to wear a cloth face mask, and try to get your child to understand that its important he or she doesn’t fiddle with it.
- Explain social distancing and explore the options of playing games where less physical contact is required.
- Explain that surfaces at school must be kept clean, and that surfaces at school must be wiped in the morning and after school.
- Disinfecting tunnels or any disinfectant in spray form is not advised.
Watch Professor Mehtar’s full video here.