INTO says public health advice crucial for reopening primary schools in September

INTO says public health advice crucial for reopening primary schools in September
INTO wants to avoid opening and closing schools if Covid-19 cases pick up. Picture: iStock

The Irish National Teachers' Organisation (INTO) says public health advice will be key to reopening primary schools in September.

It comes as New Zealand reopened its schools today while French children went back to school last week.

INTO General Secretary John Boyle says Ireland does not want to open schools and then have to close again.

He says: "There is particular challenges in every country and that's why New Zealand had a different opening time to France.

"In fact, since France opened last week there is already been 70 cases identified and quite a number of schools in Northern France didn't open today.

"We would hope that when Ireland would reopen, we would stay open and we wouldn't have to close them again."

Meanwhile, an official guide on how to give Leaving Cert students calculated grades is expected to be issued to teachers this week.

However, both the Association of Secondary Teachers, Ireland and the Teachers' Union of Ireland have expressed concerns around the fairness and equity of using calculated grades.

Details on the system of calculated grades, the alternative arrangement brought in after this summer's exams were cancelled, are currently being finalised.

The Department of Education has asked schools to have their end of the data submitted to it as close to the end of May as possible but educational groups have expressed doubts around this timeline.

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