Schools in St Vincent and the Grenadines will remain closed for an additional week, beyond the scheduled reopening date of January 4, 2021.
The decision to postpone the re-opening of schools was taken to “allow for a thorough search aimed at further containing the local spread of COVID-19 in St Vincent and the Grenadines,” a release from the National Emergency Management Organization said.
The announcement of the extension of the Christmas vacation came days after it was announced by the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) that a local cluster of Covid-19 cases, among people who had no recent history of travel, had been confirmed.
On Friday night, the total number of cases in this cluster stood at six, although contact tracing, retesting and quarantining was ongoing.
As at Saturday, January 2, SVG had recorded one 123 cases of COVID-19, of which 99 have recovered and 24 are active.
“All positive cases will continue to be isolated until cleared by two negative tests,” NEMO said.
“Contact tracing, retesting and quarantining of the December 28, 2020 cluster and wider screening of the Vincentian population for Covid-19 cases will continue during the week of January 4 to 8, 2021,” NEMO said on Saturday night.
Permanent Secretary Myccle Burke, in a release also issued on Saturday night said the Ministry of Education and National Reconciliation took the decision to postpone the re-opening of school “on the expert advice provided by the Ministry of Health and the Environment and out of an abundance of caution…”
The release said the Ministry of Education will make every effort to ensure that students are not adversely affected by the extended period of school closure.