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Oct 16, 2020

Schools Will Also Remain Closed Until Further Notice

Dean Barrow

When will schools be reopened for in-class attendance?  While many have asked that question, the Belize National Teachers Union is seeking government’s consideration to have teachers prepare lesson plans from home.  That’s because President Elena Smith has cited concerns about the safety of teachers amid a spike in the number cases among educators.


Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“Coming to the question of any decision to in fact reopen schools, let me say this; I just had a message two or so days ago from the president of the BNTU, the Belize National Teachers Union, asking if in fact the NOC would contemplate pulling back from the current situation in which teachers are asked to physically go to school to prepare the lessons that later on are given out or prepare the work that’s distributed to the children by whatever means they use.  President Smith is saying that a number of teachers have been afflicted by COVID and that it is the considered view of the union and of the teachers they represent that teachers should not even be asked to go to school with the schools being empty, except for the teachers, with the classrooms being empty, not to do any kind of teaching but just to do the organization of the workload.  So it strikes me that you’re not going to get any support at all from certainly the unionized teachers, in terms of the call for the physical reopening of schools.  Now the private schools are another matter, but again, I think that while there is nothing to say that we can’t be flexible, in the normal course you would want uniformity in terms of this whole policy of whether or not schools are to reopen.”

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