Outbreak team tells Dutch government to reopen primary schools: Report
The outgoing Dutch Cabinet has received official advice from the Outbreak Management Team to allow schools and daycare facilities to reopen, according to NOS. The advisory statement, obtained by the broadcaster before its public release, will be the topic of discussion during a Sunday meeting at Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s official residence which will include Cabinet ministers and OMT members.
The final decision is expected to be announced on Tuesday evening during a press conference with Rutte and Health Minister Hugo de Jonge.
Rutte reaffirmed on Friday that the decision to open schools will be heavily influenced by OMT advice. The group has been examining research into how children catch and spread coronavirus mutations, like the B117 variant which originated in the United Kingdom.
Cabinet members including Finance Minister Wopka Hoekstra said they want schools to open up on February 8, with concern mounting about how the lockdown and remote learning has negatively affected the well-being of younger children. The prime minister also held firm that the first part of society to benefit from relaxed social restrictions would be the primary school system.
Rutte was also expected to present a new roadmap to guide the Netherlands out of lockdown during Tuesday’s press conference.