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No PPEs, means no reopening of schools in Gauteng, says MEC Lesufi

The MEC on Thursday gave an update on Gauteng province’s state of readiness ahead of the re- opening of schools next month.

FILE: Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Gauteng Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi on Thursday said that no school in the province would be allowed to reopen without the delivery of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Lesufi gave an update on the province’s state of readiness ahead of the reopening of schools next month. He said that schools would be assessed by districts and issued with a certificate of compliance before they could be allowed to resume teaching and learning.

Grade 7 and matric pupils were expected to return to the classroom on 1 June.

Lesufi said that the province was on track to resume with the 2020 academic calendar in accordance with strict health and safety guidelines.

“The PPEs must arrive first before the next thing can happen. So, no PPEs, no opening of schools,” Lesufi said.

“We don’t want to risk [children’s health and safety] as we said, it’s safety first,” he added.

He said his department was in the process of recruiting young people who would be working to assist the department to enforce health protocols at schools across the province.

“We’ve also went for a recruitment of what we call COVID-19 Youth Brigades. These are young people that will ensure that in schools there is social distancing and learners are not touching each other. They will also assist with screening and providing the overall support,” he said.

The MEC said added to the department’s measures, there would be social distancing marks placed around school premises and playing fields would be cordoned off.

For official information about COVID-19 from the Department of Health, please click here.