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Covid: Opening Jersey's schools 'the right thing'

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  • Coronavirus pandemic
image captionFollowing medical advice, Senator John Le Fondre said schools should open

"It is the right thing to open the schools," said Jersey's chief minister.

"The balance of harm to children by not going to school and getting teacher taught in school is far worse than the relatively low risk of coronavirus," added Senator John Le Fondre.

His comments follow the resignation of the island's education minister on Monday - the same day children returned to school in Jersey.

Mr Le Fondre described the resignation as "unfortunate".

He said: "The risk within the island remains presently low, particularly when you start looking at what's happening in the United Kingdom."

The chief minister said based on medical advice it made "absolute sense" for children to be back at school.

image copyrightGovernment of Jersey
image captionSenator Tracey Vallois voiced concerns about schools reopening

Senator Tracey Vallois resigned after she claimed her concerns about the opening of schools in the island were dismissed.

Mr Le Fondre said: "It is with regret that we've had the resignation of Senator Vallois, I respect her views but obviously we've had to follow the professional advice very clearly."

It was the minister of health's legal responsibility to act on professional medical advice "to keep schools open", he added.

Mr Le Fondre said Deputy Jeremy Macon would be the acting education minister before a formal appointment decision came to the assembly.

"I would like to reassure everyone that the department, head teachers, teachers, lecturers and school staff are doing all they can to ensure that students' education is disrupted as little as possible and school life can continue as normally as it possibly can," said Mr Macon.

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  • Jersey's minister for education resigns as school concerns 'dismissed'

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