KwaZulu-Natal Education MEC, Kwazi Mshengu, says all Grade R learners from Richards Bay Primary School in the province have been screened for coronavirus, following allegations that a fellow Grade R learner tested positive for the virus.

It is believed that the test was conducted at a private laboratory. The school was closed on Monday following concerns.

Mshengu says the results still need to be verified by the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD).

“The NICD was then alerted to confirm that until they also proceed with their processes. You will also remember that I think it was in Free State where a case of coronavirus was confirmed after being tested by a private lab, but later on it appeared that was not the case. The NICD requested that they run their processes so that they can speak with authority on the matter. So, as we speak, the school has been closed since yesterday. All the Grade R learners were screened by the NICD and they said they can only test them once they confirm if the other one has tested positive,” says Mshengu.

Meanwhile, Mshengu says they are awaiting confirmation from the National Education Department on whether the Easter holiday classes for matric learners will still go ahead.

Schools close from Wednesday

From Wednesday, all schools will be closed because of the coronavirus. This could have a severe effect on families, especially as daycares may be restricted too.

How strict should we be as parents – should children be allowed out to play, can they be cared for by grandparents? These are all issues that have to be dealt with.

Clinical Psychologist Mandy Rodrigues explains how parents can deal with this unusual set of circumstances: