There has been a “considerable decrease” in Covid-19 cases at Northern Cape schools since the start of the third term, according to the Northern Cape Department of Education.
Authorities said there have been 213 infections since the third term began on 26 July. “While the infection rate remains consistently low, only three schools needed to close during this period and are scheduled to reopen on Monday,” said department spokesperson Geoffrey van der Merwe.
Van der Merwe said they were pleased with the manner in which schools were complying with Covid-19 regulations and guidelines.
“Over the past weeks, members of the executive council and senior management of the department visited schools to monitor and assess Covid-19 compliance,” he added.
During the first two weeks of the third term, 181 positive Covid-19 cases were recorded at schools in the province.
As of Sunday, the province had recorded a total of 72 908 cases, with 406 new cases recorded in the previous 24 hours.
Seventy-nine schools have returned to the regular timetabling model, where all pupils attend school daily.
“The department indicated from the onset that only schools that can comply with the Covid-19 regulations and guidelines will be allowed to return to the normal timetable model. We will continue to safeguard the lives of our educators, learners and non-teaching staff to always adhere to the Covid-19 regulations and non-pharmaceutical interventions,” Van der Merwe said.
The department has encouraged teachers and support staff who have not yet been vaccinated to make use of the public vaccination programme.
“Vaccination has proven to be safe and it’s the only way that you can protect yourself and your loved ones against Covid-19,” Van der Merwe said.
“Our learners have lost valuable learning and teaching time due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the department is implementing recovery plans and intervention programmes to support all our learners,” he said.