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Dept probing Covid-19 allegations at NC school

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Accusations that coronavirus protocols were violated at Northern Cape school

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THE NORTHERN Cape Department of Education has confirmed that it is investigating allegations that disaster management protocols were violated at DL Jansen Primary School.

This is after a teacher at the school reportedly informed the acting principal more than two weeks ago that a live-in relative had tested positive for Covid-19.

According to information received, the teacher shares transport with 16 other teachers from Reakantswe Intermediate School and DL Jansen Primary, both of which are in Windsorton.

It has been alleged that parents engaged the school management but the staff were afraid to discuss the issue after they were allegedly instructed by the circuit manager to keep it quiet and allow the school to continue with learning and teaching.

“Some teachers called parents in private to confirm the matter.”

According to a parent, some parents went to the school on Monday after they received information that the affected teacher had been hospitalised in Kimberley with Covid-19.

“Our children have been exposed to Covid-19 as the school was not closed when the teacher informed the acting principal that she had been in contact with a Covid-19 patient,” the parent stated. 

“We are demanding that all our children are tested for Covid 19.”

The parent called on the department to respond to the allegation that Covid-19 protocols had been violated.

Parents were advised on Monday that the school would be closed until further notice after a teacher had tested positive on the weekend and had been admitted to Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe Hospital in Kimberley.

“Teachers will be undergoing testing to see if the virus has spread at the school,” a letter to parents stated. “If the outcome shows that more teachers are affected, then the testing of pupils will be implemented.”

The spokesperson for the Northern Cape Department of Education, Geoffrey van der Merwe, confirmed on Monday that the department’s district office was investigating the matter.

The department announced on Monday that 48 schools in the Province had been closed due to Covid-19 infections, while three of the department’s district offices have also been closed.