Ferndale Primary School in Newlands East, Durban. Picture supplied
Ferndale Primary School in Newlands East, Durban. Picture supplied

Concern after two teachers test positive for Covid-19 in Durban school

By Zainul Dawood Time of article published May 20, 2021

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DURBAN - Parents whose children attend Ferndale Primary School in Durban had mixed reactions to sending their children to the school after two of its teachers tested positive for Covid-19.

This came as all contact sports were suspended at all schools on Wednesday following Covid-19 cluster outbreaks at public schools.

Ferndale Primary School’s Announcement Page said the school had been sanitised and fumigated.

The school sent out a circular at the beginning of the week informing parents that one of the teachers had tested positive for Covid-19.

In view of this, the school said in the circular it would follow necessary safety protocols laid down by the Department of Health and the Department of Basic Education (DBE).

The school suspended classes for two days to sanitise but reopened on Thursday.

“Grade 2D pupils were asked to remain at home for the duration of the week,” said AP Meyers, the SGB chairperson.

Community activist Andre de Bruin said there was cause for concern after the two teachers tested positive.

He said it was reckless for the department to instruct all the Grade 3 pupils to stay home as children mixed with one another.

He was concerned as to whether any tracing had been done.

Ferndale Primary School in Newlands East, Durban. Picture supplied

“Many children live with their grandparents. The virus can be spread to them at home. Teachers are teaching with fear. Sanitising a school is not enough. Tracing and more precautions must be taken,” said De Bruin.

KwaZulu-Natal Department of Education spokesperson Muzi Mahlambi said each school had received a circular with detailed instructions informing them of what to do in situations like these.

Meanwhile, the Council of Education Ministers (CEM) on Wednesday pulled the plug on all contact sports with immediate effect following Covid-19 cluster outbreaks in public schools.

According to the DBE, the decision was taken during a virtual meeting held on Wednesday.

The department said non-contact sports training was permitted provided all social distancing, hygiene and safety measures were observed, and there was zero physical contact between the participants.

Education Minister Angie Motshekga gazetted directions in consultation with related stakeholders allowing non-contact sports, sports-related activities, school-based art and cultural activities to resume without spectators when the schools reopened this year.

According to the department, it was evident that despite following the protocols as guided by the directions on extramural activities and standard operating procedure on prevention and containment of Covid-19, that contact sports were a contributor to the spread of the virus.

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