Worries, enthusiasm at secondary schools

Strabrecht College in Geldrop is ready to reopen safely. Photo credit: Eindhoven News Media Gallery

The secondary schools in the region will start the new academic year next week.

This is after a month-long break. Because of the coronavirus, this requires the necessary adjustments and rules. It’s now become evident that young people appear to be able to transmit the virus easily too. So, proper air ventilation is more important than ever for schools.

The Geldrop Strabrecht College is lucky in that respect. The brand new school building was completed on 1 August. “The renovation was already planned”, director Hans Abels says.

Modern ventilation system

“We are ‘lucky’. We paid extra attention to, among other things, the layout of the building and the air circulation”. The new school buildings are equipped with a modern ventilation system with no recirculation.

“That means our new air purification system ensures fresh air is continuously pumped into the building”, Abels says. “We can also easily indicate a certain route in the corridors”.

The Lorentz Casimir Lyceum in Eindhoven has to make do with an old building, without modern ventilation. “We’ll just open the windows here”, rector Jessica Baart explains. “We’ll see what we can do in the winter.”

“I’ve learned not to look any further ahead than two weeks. The rules and regulations still change so quickly. It makes little sense to worry about that now”.

Same as before

Teachers crave regular lessons in a classroom full of students after months of distance education. But, the rising COVID-19 numbers still worry them. Baart: “We’ll deal with this in the same way as before the holidays.”

“Teachers who are at risk can also lead their classes from home. The class can then follow that lesson onscreen. Of course, we’ll have an assistant to keep order”.

Hans agrees: “Of course we follow all National Health Department’s guidelines. Should new measures be announced, we’ll quickly act accordingly. This, naturally, doesn’t change the fact that teachers, other staff, pupils, and their parents may have concerns. We try to find a suitable solution for each situation”.

The schools are still in full preparation. On Monday, 24 August, pupils will start their new school year.

Source: Studio040

Translator: Bob

Editor: Melinda Walraven

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