JTA concerned after CSEC student tests positive for COVID-19

Owen Speid
The Jamaica Teachers Association (JTA) is concerned about the health of  teachers and students from a high school in the Corporate Area, who recently interacted with a CSEC student, who has tested positive for COVID-19.
JTA President Owen Speid says contact tracing is taking place.
High schools reopened briefly in July to assist students preparing for CXC exams.
Mr. Speid says the incident is a timely reminder for teachers to maintain protocols to protect themselves. 
"We are very concerned though that our teachers may be exposed to the danger of contracting the virus in circumstances like these and with just a few weeks to go before the reopening of school, we want to call out to our teachers to say self-preservation is the key and they need to try to keep themselves safe," he cautioned.  
Mr. Speid is hoping that the contact tracing can be done quickly. 
"I know it's going to be difficult because...we don't know where the child contracted the virus from. But the truth is that that child was intermingling with other children on the schools premises and the Ministry of Health just needs to move speedily to find those persons who might have come into contact with that child and have the teacher tested as well," he said. 
Election concern 
In the meantime, Mr. Speid is concerned that the impending general election will delay preparations for the reopening of schools next month.
He has said the surge in COVID-19 cases could delay the start of the new academic year.
Mr. Speid believes the holding of the general election will result in an increase in the number of positive cases.
"We just believe that it is a recipe for disaster when you add the election campaigning to the usual activities that normally happen for the reopening of school and I want to say to our teachers that they need to be very careful as they go out and as the children are about to go out, the parents need to be very careful and to ensure that they follow the guidelines of the Ministry of Health," he warned.  
"But how can people campaigning obey the guidelines of the Ministry of Health? I don't see them abiding by the...physical distancing guidelines at all," he lamented. 

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