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As Covid Surges, Serious Questions Remain Over School Return

Cassy O'Connor MP  -  Monday, 10 January 2022

Tags: COVID-19, Education, Schools, Children and Young People

Cassy O'Connor MP | Greens Leader and Education spokesperson

As Covid rips through the Tasmanian community,  many parents are highly stressed about sending their unvaccinated children into classrooms when the school year begins on 9 February.

Education Minister Courtney needs to explain in detail how children can be kept safe from the highly infectious Omicron variant, or Delta, during this escalating Covid outbreak.

A month from now case numbers will still be soaring, and Public Health guesstimates this current surge will peak in March.

Telling parents their children ‘may’ need to wear masks provides no reassurance this Minister and this government are ‘on top of Covid’ as they promised Tasmanians they would be.

Parents can’t make an informed decision about whether it’s safe to send their children back in to crowded classrooms.

Teachers also need strong reassurance, particularly those who are immuno-compromised or with a chronic condition.

If Covid got loose in our primary schools it would be devastating.

A growing body of research points to significant long term health impacts, including a higher risk of developing diabetes, in children who have contracted Covid.

The Gutwein Government has let Covid rip through the Tasmanian community but it must take every necessary step not to let it rip through Tasmania’s schools.