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Teacher's Union of Ireland: 'Schools are not going to be open on January 11'

By Rory Cashin

January 5, 2021 at 10:06am

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The head of the TUI has stated that the schools should remain closed until at least January 18.

Following a record high of 6,110 new cases of Covid-19 confirmed in Ireland on Monday night, there has been a lot of speculation regarding an increased amount of restrictions to be implemented in order to curb the rise of the infection rates.

In the initial reaction to these rising numbers, the government had stated that "If we act collectively and all say at home for the next week which we can do, then I believe it's safe for our schools to reopen", but as the infection rate continued to climb, it was later announced that the government will make a definitive decision on the matter of the reopening of schools at Wednesday's Cabinet meeting.

However, the general-secretary of the Teachers' Union of Ireland (TUI), Michael Gillespie this morning stated that schools "are not going to be open", suggesting that this level of uncertainty around them reopening is not helpful, before recommending that the closure should last until at least Monday, January 18.

Speaking to Newstalk Breakfast, Gillespie had the following to say:

"There is a plan - we're way better prepared than we were last year - there's a plan to support continuity of schooling, and this was agreed by the stakeholders.

"So guidance on remote teaching and learning in the COVID-19 context has been agreed for post-primary schools and centres for education. What we're saying is that should kick in next Monday".

"We're not calling for a long-term closure, we're just talking for the minimum time possible to allow this. Schools will open, but they'll open in a remote context and schools have planned for that over the last couple of months".

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