As the holiday season comes to an end for Nova Scotians across this province, many parents, guardians and staff are asking about the Houston government’s back-to-school plan.
“We know that schools are the best place for children,” says Liberal Education and Early Childhood Development critic MLA Derek Mombourquette. “But with this new variant spreading quickly across this province, teachers and parents need to know – what’s the plan?”
Last month, the Omicron variant forced schools to close early and holiday break to be extended.
“The Minister said the decision to begin the school holiday break early was an operational decision based on staffing pressures and was not a public health decision,” says Mombourquette. “Should staff be preparing to go back to work? Will they be provided with rapid tests? Should parents be preparing to work from home while their kids are learning online? There are a lot of unanswered questions and we need a plan.”
Based on current reporting, almost 70% of school-aged children have not yet received their first COVID-19 vaccination, breaking their promise to have 80% of kids aged 5-11 vaccinated before Christmas.
The Nova Scotia Liberal Party has been calling on the government to create more vaccination opportunities for children, including school-based clinics, and have asked that educators be prioritized for COVID-19 testing.