Alternate exam venue protocols for matrics who test positive for Covid-19
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Cape Town - Covid-19 protocol for matrics who have tested positive have been distributed by the Department of Education following an announcement made last week that pupils who test positive may still write their National Senior Certificate examinations.
The Department of Education’s (DBE) decision was done in agreement with the Department of Health. This is after pupils and parents made representations to the DBE asking that it allow pupils who have tested positive for Covid-19 to write their exams.
However; that same decision sparked fury with the teacher’s unions who said that they were not consulted and feared for the safety of their members.
The unions went as far as saying that teachers would not be invigilating exams where a Covid-19 positive pupil is writing, instead, they called for nurses to invigilate.
Pupils who have tested positive for Covid-19 and have not completed the mandatory ten days of isolation are expected to self-isolate at home or in an isolation/quarantine facility in line with current guidelines, and will only be permitted to leave isolation/quarantine in order to write their examinations.
Covid-19 positive grade 12s will write at an alternate venue and under secure conditions which comply with the examination regulations.
According to the DBE the alternate venue should be:
- Well-ventilated and must allow for appropriate physical distancing.
- Cleaned daily in line with protocols outlined in DBE Covid-19 protocols.
- Compliant with physical distancing and non-pharmaceutical interventions such as wearing of masks, hand-washing and other hygiene practices is critical. Compliance must be ensured before, during and after the examination.
- Invigilators should comply with all non-pharmaceutical interventions and should be provided with medical masks.
- Arrangements must be made to ensure that candidates do not pose a transmission risk to others during travel to and from the examination venue. Candidates can walk to the venue or use private transport. Where these options are not possible, health and education officials should work together to provide an alternative arrangement.