Education Principal Secretary Dr Belio Kipsang has revealed that a total of 50 students and teachers have tested positive for COVID-19 since the reopening of schools earlier this month.
Among the 50 affected, 17 are students while 33 of them are teachers. Non-teaching staffs have also been reported to have contracted the virus.
Speaking to members of parliament at the National Assembly, Dr Kipsang, told the Assembly’s Education Committee that 35 schools countrywide.
Schools Won't Be Reclosed
Kipsang however, ruled out any likelihood of school closure in the next eventuality.
“We are not about to close schools unless advised by the Ministry of Health, but we are putting our heads together to work our modalities of reopening other classes,” said Dr Kipsang.
Social Distance Issue
He informed the Members of Parliament that the greatest challenge faced in public schools is achieving social distancing due to inadequate infrastructure. He added that public schools would need to double their infrastructure if they were to accomplish it.
The PS maintained that the Education Ministry is planning to mitigate, by giving water for regular washing of hands and ensuring that students wear masks in schools.
Government Won't Buy Masks
He additionally pronounced that the government does not plan to buy face masks for students requesting parents to take responsibility.
Dr Kipsang stated that they will partner with development allies to guarantee students who cannot afford masks get them in order to restrict the spread of the virus.
Parents And Politicians To Blame
The PS blamed parents and politicians for frustrating attempts to curb the spread of the disease.
“Our challenge is our parents attending political rallies and other social gatherings without masks, let’s not blame our children, why tell us to achieve social distance in schools if parents are attending rallies without observing measures?” He said.
Members of the committee led by Chairperson and Busia County Woman Representative Hon Florence Mutua noted that despite the fact that it’s crucial for learners to go back to school, the government need to put in place satisfactory measures to warrant the safety of children before they resume learning in schools.
Tononoka Secondary School Principal Mr Mohammed Khamis on Monday succumbed to the virus as death rate and infections continue to rise in the country.