Speaking about the decision to offer a vaccination for 12-15-year-olds, David Evans, Wales Secretary for the National Education Union Cymru, said:
“We note that the Welsh Ministers have decided to go ahead with offering to vaccinate children. We know that everyone in education wants schools and colleges to operate as "normal" as possible, avoiding disruption for staff and students alike. This decision could help realise this need, where children can continue to attend their school or college over the winter period.
“Whilst we recognise that the decision has been carefully weighed up, it is critical that the NHS now leads the plans in this area. Schools will need to focus on education recovery, so it is critical that disruption be kept to a minimum. We are pleased to note the Welsh Government recognise the impact of Long Covid on children, it has always been our aim that learning is as safe as possible for staff and students alike.
“Everyone wants schools and colleges to be back to ‘business as usual’ this term. It is really important that young people have access to learning, and wellbeing support. But sadly Covid-19 hasn’t gone away, so it is important we have as many mitigations as possible in place to help make the environment safe for staff and learners alike. Vaccination is a helpful tool, but it isn't a panacea.
“We are speaking to the Welsh Government about improving ventilation in education in Wales – they have taken some welcome steps, in terms of CO2 monitors – but it is critical that we make every resource available to keep education open. Everyone wants to avoid as much disruption as possible.”
The National Education Union is an amalgamation of the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) and National Union of Teachers (NUT), formed on 1 September 2017. Please see the below contact details for assistance:
Contact: David Evans, National Education Union, Tŷ Sinnott, 18 Neptune Court, Vanguard Way, Cardiff CF24 5PJ. Tel: 029 20491818. Mob: 07815 071164.
Note to editors:
- The National Education Union stands up for the future of education. It brings together the voices of teachers, lecturers, support staff and leaders working in maintained and independent schools and colleges to form the largest education union in Wales.
- The National Education Union is affiliated to the Trades Union Congress (TUC), European Trade Union Committee for Education (ETUCE) and Education International (EI). It is not affiliated to any political party and seeks to work constructively with all the main political parties.