PRIMARY SCHOOL students in Ireland may be limited to just one day a week back in the classroom, even after schools reopen in September.
That’s according to Education Minister Joe McHugh, who said the limit would have to be in place in order to adhere to the two-metre rule for social distancing.
Speaking at a meeting outlining the roadmap to reopening schools in Ireland [via the Irish Mirror], Mr. McHugh called for a relaxation of the two-metre rule as part of the government’s roadmap to reopening schools.
Under the current social distancing measures, secondary school pupils would also be limited of just two days a week in the classroom, with children of all ages forced to engage with a curriculum that blended school and home-based learning.
He said: "I want a common sense approach to reopening schools in September.
"Where possible, children and young people and staff should be far enough away from each other so they are not breathing on or touching each other and this will have to be accompanied by additional hygiene measures in schools.
"I want to be very clear with everyone around the impact of one-metre and two-metre social distancing in schools.
"At primary level the two-metre rule would mean almost all pupils attending school just one day per week.
"At post-primary level, this would mean most pupils attending schools two days during the week."
Under Mr. McHugh’s proposals, a one-metre social distancing rule would be introduced in schools.
That system would allow primary school pupils to attend school for two-and-a-half days a week while secondary school pupils would be able to attend classes on a half-time basis.
The proposals come as Ireland begins to prepare for life after lockdown with government officials reporting that there are “almost zero” new cases of coronavirus being reported.