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Wishart: Guidance on test and trace in schools "remains unclear"

July 17, 2020 1:00 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Responding to the new report from Covid-19 Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children's Issues, which suggests "no distancing" will be required between students in primary or secondary schools, Scottish Liberal Democrat education spokesperson Beatrice Wishart MSP said:

"Teachers are understandably anxious about being in close proximity with large numbers of students while the rest of the country is told to maintain a safe social distance.

"The guidance as it stands is too vague. It is important that there is a clear framework of how activities and contact tracing will work in practice within school settings. There are practical questions that can't be left to chance.

"In New Zealand, if a school or early learning service has a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19, they must close for 72 hours to allow contact tracing, and then potentially for a further 14 days. Teachers need reassurance that an equivalent plan will be developed and put in place so that outbreaks can be effectively contained.

"It is now less than a month before students and teachers will return to class. Expectations and restrictions need to be crystal clear if people are going to be able to teach and learn safely and efficiently."