Unvaccinated secondary students will be permitted to return to school from next Monday, November 22, the Cabinet has decided.
Reports say that Acting Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr. Terri-Ann Joseph; Director of Education Clare Browne; and the Director of Pharmaceutical Services met with the Cabinet this week to discuss the global figures in all secondary institutions.
The technicians reportedly advised the Executive that herd immunity has been achieved, as more than 80 per cent of the secondary-school population is now vaccinated.
Government Spokesperson Lionel “Max” Hurst says that, in balancing the benefits against the risks from the virus, Cabinet agreed that face-to-face learning for all secondary students, regardless of vaccination status, will be resumed.
The Cabinet Notes indicate that face-to-face learning for unvaccinated children will resume in January 2022; however, Hurst says that this date is an error.
In the meantime, the Ministry of Education will be conducting sessions with the parents of unvaccinated students in an effort to convince them of the importance of inoculation.
Hurst says that those students who are still not vaccinated, come January 2022, must undergo a COVID-19 test every two weeks. There will be no charge for these tests, he says.
Many residents say they do not believe this decision was taken because herd immunity has been reached in schools. Rather, they say, the Cabinet’s change of heart was spurred by the picket on Tuesday, November 16, when parents, teachers and students turned out to protest the vaccination mandate.
Reportedly over 500 people took part in the three-hour action, and REAL News understands that some parents and students were prepared to make it a weekly event.