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Risk of a Big Second Coronavirus Wave in UK Schools After Reopening

Experts have warned Britain of a major wave of COVID-19 infection if schools reopen on a full-time basis without implementing all of the proposed measures. Most importantly, the government should advance the test-trace-isolate system. Parents and stakeholders are still scared despite the assurance that schools will reopen fully by September.

Critics say that there could be a bigger wave that is almost two times bigger than the initial infection that forced schools to close down early this year.

Schools Reopening is a National Priority

According to Boris Johnson, who is the current UK prime minister, having the kids back in school by the beginning of September is a priority by the government. As such, they are ensuring that all schools have fulfilled the set standards such as expanding the classrooms, libraries, sports halls, and providing enough handwashing areas for kids.

  • Temporary structures as a solution – The government has asked schools to make sure that every classroom has only 15 students or below. Therefore, schools need to add extra learning structures and temporary solutions are their best bet. Even before the coronavirus, these structures were preferences for many schools. If you are still planning to have either custom or modular temporary classrooms for your school, you could check here for more information.
  • Isolation as a solution – Health officials are preparing school teachers on how to deal with kids and colleagues who show symptoms of sickness before the medics arrive. It is one of the biggest challenges at the moment, and in fact, many people are more concerned. However, the government insists that it will provide PPE and training for teachers on what to look for and how to handle such cases.
  • Hand washing areas – Another solution that has been proposed is to have handwashing areas in schools, and not just one, but as many as possible. With schools having many students, there must be no crowding at these facilities during break time. The school must have a well-planned break schedule so that students do not meet outside at the same time.
  • Blended learning – Although the government insists that students will resume school on a full-time basis, there is a serious proposal to have blended learning. This means that students will be in school for a short time and then the rest of the day they will involve online remote studies at home. The government should provide fast internet access and laptops to students to facilitate this. It will enable kids to attend school in shifts and avoid meetings.

The Challenge

Many have challenged the government and claimed that the second wave of coronavirus could erupt in schools. They think that the peak will be in December and that the track-trace-isolate system will not handle the situation.

For instance, in July, this approach was only able to reach 75% of the contacts of people who tested positive. But if it is improved, it might prevent the escalation of the pandemic, especially if the schools adhere to the other measures that have been set by the health sector.

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