NC Education Department slams claims made by union over Covid cases at city school.
THE NORTHERN Cape Department of Education has slammed a statement by the Public Servants Association of South Africa (PSA) on Covid-19 cases at Northern Cape High School in Kimberley, labelling it a “distortion of the truth”.
Department spokesperson Lehuma Ntuane said on Thursday that the allegations made by the PSA in a statement issued on May 11 were misleading and factually incorrect.
“In the statement, the PSA said there were nine confirmed Covid-19 cases at Northern Cape High School. The statement further claimed that the department was inconsistent in applying Covid-19 guidelines and regulations. The department received Covid-19 information from the school last week Friday, which stated that on May 3 there was one learner who tested positive for Covid-19, another learner tested positive on May 5, one learner and one educator tested positive on May 7, on May 10 one learner tested positive and on May 11 two learners were recorded as testing positive. The confirmed cases happened sporadically and there is no evidence suggesting that the confirmed cases came as a result of internal transmission amongst learners,” said Ntuane.
He added that the school had followed all the correct procedures and guidelines.
“The affected learners and the educator are currently in isolation and self-quarantine. The school also said in its own statement that the premises are being deep-cleaned every Friday. The department is pleased that the school recently purchased a refined fumigation sanitation machine which is used to sanitise and fumigate the classrooms as well as other high-traffic areas.”
Ntuane assured parents that the department is doing everything to ensure the safety of the pupils and teachers as well as additional staff.
“The department is working closely with the Department of Health and we always determine the closure of schools based on the advice we receive from the Health Department. The department will never put the lives of learners and educators at risk.
“We have always valued the importance of maintaining sound and cordial relationships with all stakeholders, including labour unions in general and the PSA in particular. We would like to urge all interested stakeholders to make use of the open-door policy the department has in order to enrich our processes and share ideas, as well as concerns, regarding any matter concerning the education sector,” Ntuane concluded.