First Minister announces Welsh lockdown to continue & sets out back to school plans
The First Minister will today confirm alert level four lockdown restrictions will remain in place in Wales for the next three weeks.
Welsh Government explain while the situation in Wales is improving, lockdown restrictions must continue for another three weeks to allow the NHS to recover.
At the lunchtime briefing later today the First Minister will also indicate that the youngest learners in primary school could begin returning to school after the February half term, if rates of coronavirus continue to fall.
The Welsh Government say they will work with schools and education partners “on a phased and flexible return to school after 22 February, if the public health situation continues to improve”.
Rates of coronavirus across Wales have fallen below 200 cases per 100,000 people for the first time since early November – although Flintshire is still 369 per 100k.
And every day, thousands more people receive their first dose of the Covid-19 vaccine – the latest figures show almost 11% of the population have been vaccinated.
Speaking to BBC Breakfast this morning Mark Drakeford said: “We want to give our schools two weeks notice of any plans.”
“Next week there will be intensive discussions with our local education authorities and our trade unions to find a way of returning as many children as we can, as safely as we can after half term.”
“There is some grounds for optimism in Wales, the numbers of people contracting coronavirus are falling, we need to see that sustained over the next three weeks, if we do, there will be some headroom for a phased and flexible return of children to learning.
“There is a strong case for having the very youngest children back in school, they’re not able to learn online and remotely, and the risk of them contracting or passing on coronavirus is the least of all.” More here: https://www.deeside.com/first-minister-there-is-a-strong-case-for-having-the-very-youngest-children-back-in-school/
Top pic: The podium in Cardiff where the First Minister will speak from. Spotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: News@Deeside.com