NIA CHARLESTOWN NEVIS (March 19, 2020) – The following is a statement by the Ministry of Education in the Nevis Island Administration (NIA) regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19).
The Ministry of Education has been actively monitoring the global spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). Ministry officials have been in constant contact with the Ministry of Health and have been making preparations for several different scenarios. We encourage the general public, particularly parents and guardians to do the same.
The health and safety of our staff and students is our number one priority, therefore we have make informed decisions based on the guidance of our health authorities. We will keep you updated as the situation continues to evolve.
At this time the Ministry of Education encourages all to continue to protect themselves. We urge you to be prepared and to not panic. We advise you to pay close attention to the recommendations and information being disseminated by our local health officials.
In this vein we urge you to assist us in ensuring that our children are educated and aware of what is happening around them. Let us continue to practice the fundamentals of proper hygiene which should be part of our everyday practice and to remember the following:
- Reinforce the concepts of thorough and regular hand washing with water and soap
- Washing hands after every bathroom use, after we sneeze or cough and after meals
- Use an alcohol based hand sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available to you
- Remind our children to practice proper respiratory hygiene i.e. coughing and sneezing into your bent elbow, sneezing into a tissue and dispose of it immediately, and do not sneeze and or cough on others
- Eat healthily and drink adequate water daily
As with all illnesses the Ministry of Education stresses the importance of students and staying at home if they are sick.
The Ministry of Education will continue to do all in its power to help to slow the spread of COVID-19. To date we have engaged in the following:
- Partnered with the Ministry of Health in a school sensitization campaign
- Met with school leaders to discuss the plans for various scenarios
- Distributed additional cleaning and sanitization supplies to all schools
- Partnered with the Ministry of Education, St. Kitts to create a response which matches our Federal context
- Met with education ministers and officials within the OECS [Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States] to share strategies, and further learn from regional partners so that we can create a plan which is in the best interest of our staff and students
Please be assured that conversations are ongoing and that our response plan is in place.
We thank you for your understanding and support as we work together to keep our schools safe.
Continue to monitor the Ministry of Education’s Facebook page for further updates.