Schools and daycares will reopen on January 10

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Update at 3.45 p.m. with statements from unions

Schools and daycares will physically reopen their doors on January 10, instead of next week, as originally planned.

All of the lessons that had been scheduled for next week will be held online instead, the education ministry said on Friday.

Public schools were scheduled to reopen on January 7, while private schools planned to reopen as early as Wednesday.

The decision was taken by a task force made up of the Maltese Union of teachers, representatives of the Church, public and private schools and health authorities, following concerns over the record number of COVID-cases. 19.

The teachers’ union MUT warned earlier in the week that schools would be “seriously disrupted” by understaffing if they were to reopen in the current situation.

The minister said in a statement that the group will continue to monitor the situation on a daily basis and follow the advice of health authorities.

University

Practical classes at the University of Malta will still start on Monday January 3, as scheduled. It is up to individual faculties to decide whether the conferences, which kick off on January 10, will be held in person or virtually.

University exams will also take place as scheduled. Those who contract COVID will be allowed to take the tests a few weeks later, rather than having to wait until September.

Educators, students stay home in case of staff shortage: MUT

In a statement after the four-hour meeting, MUT said a compromise had been reached for all schools, including post-secondary schools, to physically reopen on January 10.

Until then, schools will assess the situation and take into account the number of staff in quarantine or on sick leave.

“When management believes that a school, classroom or group cannot be attended in person, due to understaffing, the school, class or group will remain at home until that the capacity required to operate is available, “he said.

In a separate statement, the Union of Professional Educators supported a virtual and physical reopening of schools.

He also proposed a system that would allow vulnerable educators and students to stay home while continuing their education until the situation improves.

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