COVID-19: Federal Government Orders Schools To Conduct Weekly Assessment

On Thursday, the  Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, stated that schools had been directed to conduct COVID-19 risk assessment every week in order to control of the coronavirus as schools are set to resume on Monday.

According to the NCDC, the assessment will determine schools’ level of compliance with safety protocols including physical distancing, hand-washing and the use of face masks, whose violation can put students at risk of COVID-19.

Scools that have announced their re-opening include Ogun, Lagos, Osun, Ekiti, Delta and Kogi States. States, where schools are resuming on Monday, include Lagos, Ekiti , Osun and Ogun.

NCDC DG, stated that:

“We have also continued to educate the public on measures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19.

“We know that as the economy and society re-open gradually, we may record a spike in COVID-19 cases. We have reviewed the situation in other countries that have re-opened schools as well as guidance from WHO, UNICEF and other public health authorities.

“There is lesser risk of COVID-19 cases in school settings, if schools carefully coordinate, plan and put the required safety measures in place before reopening.

“We are working closely with the Federal Ministry of Education, PTF-COVID-19, states and our partners to ensure that the required safety measures are in place to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on our schools.”

“The PTF-COVID-19 and Federal Ministry of Education have mandated schools to conduct periodic (weekly) risk assessments. This is to review the gaps that may exist in reducing the risk of COVID-19 spread in schools, and tailor interventions to address these gaps. Local governments areas and states are to conduct monthly and quarterly risk assessment respectively.”

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“In addition to this, schools are to set up school health teams including teachers and learners that would facilitate implementation of the safety protocols in schools. LGAs and States have been advised to set up multi-sectoral school health committees dedicated to supporting and monitoring the implementation of safety protocols in the school.”

On risk management, Emeka Oguanuo, said:

“the process of identifying and analysing potential gaps, threats that may cause a likelihood of COVID-19 spread.

“Risk assessments in public health are also done to determine severity or degree of an outbreak.  In this case, it is done to determine if school re-opening  is safe  and whenever a bridge in safety is observed, it  can be addressed by relevant stakeholders.”

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