The Workers’ Party has called for the closure of schools to be extended beyond January 11th, as previously announced by the government, following the increase in COVID-19 cases.

David Gardiner, Workers’ Party representative in Palmerstown-Fonthill, said:

“Despite the recent case numbers, which are expected to continue to increase over the coming days, the government has not yet announced whether or not schools will remain closed. As it stands, the plan is to go ahead and reopen on Monday.”

“In a radio interview, Josephina Madigan, Minister of State for Special Education and Inclusion, was actually digging her heels in, claiming that the schools were safe and ready to reopen by January 11th.”

“With such a large increase in cases expected to continue, this is a huge risk to the health of students, teachers and society at large.”

“The Workers’ Party urges the government, ahead of the announcement of their decision expected Wednesday, to postpone the reopening of schools.”

“Schools in the north will be closed until at least the end of the month, but if looser restrictions are in place in the south, the lockdown in the north will be somewhat undermined, potentially affecting the island as a whole negatively. We need to be sensible, realistic and consistent north and south to fight the virus.”