There is no school covid crisis

Prompted by the EIS and local Labour folk, our media have delighted in stirring up anxiety and implying that the SNP schools strategy must be flawed.

The facts are in. The above is rubbish:

A summary of the latest evidence on coronavirus (COVID-19) in schools has been published. The paper, from the COVID-19 Advisory Sub-Group on Education and Children’s Issues, looks at the risks posed by the virus to pupils and staff, and the benefits to children and young people of schools remaining open.

It shows:

  • the rate of coronavirus-related sickness among pupils is low across the country – at 12 November, this represented about 0.1% of all pupils
  • there is no direct evidence that transmission of the virus within schools plays a significant role in driving rates of infection among children
  • data found there is no difference between COVID-19 positivity rates in teachers and school staff relative to other worker groups of the same age
  • closing schools presents a serious risk of harm to the wellbeing of children and young people, particularly those who are vulnerable
  • more than 75% of schools in Scotland did not have any pupils who tested positive for COVID-19 in the first term of the school year. Rises in positive cases in the last three weeks of term coincided with an increase in community prevalence across all adult age groups. 

Professor Devi Sridhar, Chair of Global Public Health at the University of Edinburgh and a member of the COVID-19 Sub-Group, said:  

The overwhelming evidence from across the world is that children are safest in school and that school closures increase educational inequalities and have long-term detrimental outcomes for young people. Scotland’s success in providing primary and secondary children full-time, in-person learning from mid-August should be an example for other countries in the world deciding their schools policy. The key factor in keeping schools open and safe is to reduce community prevalence by ensuring appropriate public health measures and restrictions are put in place to reduce community transmission.

https://www.gov.scot/news/coronavirus-covid-19-in-schools/

Schools not out.

5 thoughts on “There is no school covid crisis”

  1. “Scotland’s success in providing primary and secondary children full-time, in-person learning from mid-August should be an example for other countries in the world deciding their schools policy.”

    Wash your mouth out Professor Sridhar – you have worked in Scotland long enough to know that kind of hyperbole is simply not acceptable in respectable circles. Do you do want to see your media presence in Scotland disappear completely?

    But seriously, wouldn’t it be a marvellous novelty if BBC Scotland’s Jamie McIvor proved us cynics won for once and informed his audience of the professor’s view?

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Do we know the situation with private schools, Edinburgh is awash with them. What is their strategy, are there cases of Covid among staff and pupils? It can’t be just state schools which have cases of Covid, will the BBC etc go and find out for us maybe? They seem very keen to concentrate on state schools hmm, I wonder why. Also private schools pupils are sometimes not normally resident in Scotland, and their parents come and go too, some pupils are boarders, is that a good idea right now?

    Like

  3. From today’s briefing the BBC in particular I noted from the questions and later coverage are very adept at inserting words (like worsening, failing, stricter etc etc ) that they know will distort and misrepresent the facts for the ordinary viewer. All very subtle but the annoying thing is Sturgeon is at times I feel is too diplomatic in her response while Salmond on the other hand in his abrasive style would have called them out. I do miss him sometimes.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. “.. the annoying thing is Sturgeon is at times I feel is too diplomatic in her response”

      Whether by natural character or due to deliberate, tactical design on the part of the FM, I agree with your assessment Gerry. I have come to the view that after many months of these briefings, some of the journalists may now be taking advantage – there is another kind of ‘taking’ I could propose – knowing that there is unlikely to be too much, if any ‘abrasiveness’ in the response. So no risk to THEIR professional reputations.

      Like

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