Covid-19: Cases at Northern Cape schools drop, despite province's overall high infection rate

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Covid-19 cases at Northern Cape schools have decreased, despite the province being listed as a concern by authorities.
Covid-19 cases at Northern Cape schools have decreased, despite the province being listed as a concern by authorities.
Laird Forbes/Gallo Images via Getty Images
  • Northern Cape schools have experienced a decline in Covid-19 cases.
  • President Cyril Ramaphosa named the Northern Cape and Free State as the two province's of most concern.
  • As of Tuesday, 9% of the country’s cases were in the province. 

Covid-19 cases at Northern Cape schools have decreased, despite the province being listed as a concern by authorities.

The Northern Cape Department of Education had observed a lower infection rate in schools, said department spokesperson Geoffrey van der Merwe.

In the past week, there were 266 new Covid-19 cases in the province's schools.

READ | Covid-19: Vaccinating children will allow for a quicker return to normal life - paediatricians

Eight support staff, 34 teachers, and 224 pupils tested positive. As of Tuesday, four schools had been closed. They were scheduled to reopen during the course of this week, said Van der Merwe.

"It reaffirms our view that schools mirror the infections in our communities. It simply means that there's a direct correlation in terms of what's happening in our communities and what we record in our schools," he said.

In an address on Sunday night, President Cyril Ramaphosa raised concerns over the high number of infections in the province.

"The two provinces that stand out from the others are the Northern Cape and Free State, where the number of infections as a proportion of the population has remained relatively high for several months. We are therefore focusing our efforts on these provinces to understand what is driving these infections and what measures we need to take to bring them down," he said.

READ | SA may be at Level 2 lockdown, but your boss must still let you work from home

As of Tuesday, there had been 229 new cases reported in the province, and a total of 86 947 cases. The Northern Cape accounted for 9% of the county's cases, alongside the Western Cape, which had recently left the peak of its third wave.

Van der Merwe encouraged communities to work with schools "to strengthen our efforts to curb the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic".

"We further encourage all citizens to participate in the public vaccination rollout programme. It has proven to be safe and it's the only way we can protect ourselves and our families against this deadly virus," he said.


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