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Health Ministry issues fresh warning regarding school re-opening

Ministry of Health CAS Rashid Aman has issued a fresh warning regarding the planned early reopening of schools.

Speaking during the daily Covid-19 briefing at Afya House in Nairobi, the CAS urged all the stakeholders to be cautious as the contagious virus is still present and spreading across the country.

According to Aman, even if the number of infections is going down, it will not be prudent for Kenyans, including the education stakeholders, to think of easing the preventive measures put in place to curb the deadly virus.

He further detailed the progress of the ongoing talks between the relevant Ministries on the schools’ reopening plans.

CAS Aman said the reopening would be done in phases involving specific schools and classes.

The Ministry will then monitor the curve progress and adjust with the virus behavior to avoid getting the nation back to where it was three months ago.

He also disclosed that during the discussions, the Health Ministry raised various cases of countries that were forced to revert back to lockdown orders after opening up various sectors of their industries pre-maturely.

An example of the cases in point was the reopening of schools in various US states in August 2020.

Schools in Mississippi, Georgia, Indiana, and Tennessee opened their doors for the first time since the Covid-19 pandemic in August.

According to a recent study by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Children’s Hospital Association regarding schools reopening, there has been a 90 percent increase in the number of coronavirus cases among children in the United States within days of resuming classes.

The CAS noted that such cases call for a careful and gradual reopening of schools in Kenya, with stringent adherence to the new containment directives.

His statement comes as the Education Ministry Geroge Magoha gives teachers a one-week ultimatum to report back to school after a directive issued by Teachers Service Commission (TSC) CEO Nancy Macharia.

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