Free State School Suspends Academic Activity Due To Covid-19

A school in the Free State province has suspended teaching and learning due to the rising Covid-19 cases. Parents have demanded that all learners be tested before they return to school. 

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Reutlwahetse secondary school in Excelsior, in the Free State has suspended teaching and learning due to a rising number of Covid-19 cases. 32 learners at the school have tested positive for Covid-19 and are currently receiving the necessary support. 

Parents of learners at the school are anxiously awaiting their children's Covid-19 results while others have demanded that the department of education test their children before they return to school. They have said that all grades should be tested because learners socialize across grades. 

The education department has stated that academic activities at Reutlwahetse secondary school will resume on Monday 10 May. 

Parents have expressed shock and worry that school would commence without knowing the Covid-19 status of many learners at the school. 

The Free State Education Department is concerned that schools seem to be superspreaders in the latest spike of Covid-19 cases in the province. 

Education spokesperson Howard Ndaba says that these positive cases can be attributed to happenings outside of school such as after the events of the long weekend. 

 Ndaba says that infetctions in schools in the Ladybrand area of the Mantsopa Municipality are also a cause for major concern.

The province's health department says that it is officially in the third wave of Covid-19. 

"We are now in the third wave of the outbreak and have today [Friday] seen a shocking rise of infections, to 427 new cases, with 60 yet to be allocated to appropriate districts," said spokesperson Mondli Mvambi. 

Mvambi said Mangaung recorded 200 new cases. Lejweleputswa, 95, Thabo Mofutsanyana, 53, Fezile Dabi, 49, and Xhariep, 21. 

The department has appealed to communities in the Free State to remain cautious by observing all Covid-19 protocol such as wearing a mask which covers the mouth and nose, washing or sanitizing their hands regularly and social distancing to avoid the spread of the virus. 

Residents were encouraged to play their part to prevent the health system from being overwhelmed. 

"Our current ability to treat people may not last if unnecessarily stretched to the limit by the non-adherence to Covid-19 measures."

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