INTO has warned phased schools reopening will not happen if Covid numbers rise
Junior and senior infant students, as well as those in 1st and 2nd class of primary school and leaving cert students are all due to get back into their classrooms tomorrow, March 1st.
This represents approximately 300.000 students.
However, the Irish National Teacher's Organisation (INTO) has said the further phased reopening of schools may not go ahead if the return to classrooms for the younger kids and leaving cert students prompts a spike in Covid-19 cases.
The return of the remaining class groups are meant to take place on March 15th and after the Easter break, however, NTO's general secretary, John Boyle has warned this could all be halted if weekly reports suggest the return to school for the first group of kids and students has caused a spike in the number of virus cases.
According to Breakingnews.ie, Mr Boyle said a report on case numbers in schools will be received by the union early next week, following the return of special education students to in-person classes earlier this month.
"We will be getting a report from the special classes on Tuesday and that's why we are not definite that schools will reopen on [March] 15th, because it will depend on a lot of things," Mr Boyle said.
"We will be getting those reports every Monday or Tuesday and if the numbers are spiking in the schools, well obviously the next half of reopening won't happen," he added.
This comes amid continuing concern regarding new variants of the virus, with one public health expert saying new variants of Covid-19 will come to Ireland very swiftly unless we take action to prevent it.