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The NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union is calling for Jersey schools to move immediately to blended learning and for greater safety protections to be urgently put in place in order to protect the health of children and education staff.

Given the surge in cases of Covid in Jersey, the NASUWT believes the Government is currently failing to adequately meet its responsibilities to keep staff and pupils safe in schools.

The Union has been pressing ministers to urgently put in place additional measures to protect pupils and staff in schools, including a move to remote and blended learning to reduce pupil numbers on school sites in order to support social distancing.

The Union has also called for the use of face coverings to be extended on school sites, greater testing and additional protections for vulnerable staff, including allowing staff who are extremely clinically vulnerable to work from home

Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said:

“Nearly three-quarters of confirmed cases of Covid among school staff since September occurred in a single two-week period to the 7 December. Given the rate that cases have increased in Jersey since then, it is likely that this is now even higher.

“The NASUWT has been inundated with concerns from frightened teachers who are being expected to teach 30 or more pupils in an enclosed space without any real protections.

“The NASUWT pressed hard for additional mitigation to be put in place during a meeting with ministers last week, yet these calls were ignored by the Government.

“The Government must act now to protect teachers and pupils.  At the very least the numbers of pupils must be reduced to enable effective two metre social distancing.

“Ministers must pull their heads from the sand and take action, rather than the constant dithering and delay that is causing more harm with every passing minute.

“The NASUWT will be putting the Jersey Government on notice of their legal responsibilities in respect of the health and safety of our members and will not hesitate to take further action if there is evidence that the welfare of members is being compromised.”


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