All schools are to fully reopen on September 21, the Ministry of Education has decreed.
Chief Education Officer Joy Adamson, in an official circular to the principals of all public and private nursery, primary and secondary schools – a copy of which has been obtained by Barbados TODAY – also announced that September 14 – 18 will be teacher’s planning week.
The start date for students entering Sixth Form will depend on the return of the CSEC and CAPE results, she said.
First form students are to enter school on September 21, the circular stated.
The Chief Education Officer urged principals to design and complete timetables, noting that adjustments to them can be made as necessary.
She said the Ministry of Education will “continue to engage with all major stakeholders” including teachers’ unions and the Ministry of Health on the format for the reopening of school in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
Adamson said that there may still be need for some form of physical distancing come September but gave no details.
The Chief Education Officer said: “The [Ministry of Education] will be providing regular updates on discussions and the sharing of information with all relevant parties. Please be reminded that the [ministry] will be adhering to all protocols stipulated by the Ministry of Health and Wellness and will be guided accordingly.”
Minister of Education Santia Bradshaw announced an early end to the Hilary term on March 19 soon after Barbados identified its first two cases of COVID-19 and following an outcry by teachers’ union that schools should close.
Since that time, schools switched to online classes and some face-to-face teaching under strict physical distancing guidelines aimed at preventing the spread of the coronavirus. [email protected]