Northern Ireland’s Covid-19 response has been plunged into chaos with teachers expected to fulfil the role of specialist contact tracing staff. Whilst there were parts of Ireland that had stopped the contact tracing of Covid patients when it came to schools it seems that Northern Ireland is not coping so well.
Just a few weeks ago the education Minister in Ireland stated that they would be opening the schools full time so that students could return back to normalcy. This was because students were having trouble coping with online schooling and so were the teaching staff. They were running into issues such as the students that needed extra help were not able to get that, there were situations that parents could not cope with helping their children as much as they needed.
This all led to students falling behind and then leading into mental health issues. The government of Ireland realized that this could snowball into having a large part of the youth struggling. Therefore decisions were made to open schools as students were also now eligible to get the vaccine.
But this did not go well as there was a wide spread of the disease within one week of the schools opening with a massive 3240 children and staff testing positive for the virus. These numbers were without contact tracing and now it seems that Northern Ireland may have to go into a serious lockdown if they are to control the spread of this and to stop the entire country from shutting down
Despite having no experience or training, and more than 3,240 confirmed cases in school age children in the last seven days, teaching staff are having to identify and alert close contacts of pupils who have tested positive.