‘Putting our kids at risk:’ Mother to remain homeschooling
WHILE some parents are more than eager to send their kids back to school after tearing their hair out home schooling, others believe it is premature.
Last Monday, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the first steps allowing Queensland children to return to school, with early years and years 11 and 12 being able to return as of this week.
Two thirds of The Western Star readers voted in a poll that sending some Queensland students back to school next week is a sensible decision, but one third disagreed, saying it was still too early.
Local mother, Paige Bright said she will not be sending her son back to school for now, as she believes restrictions have been eased too early.
She has made the choice to keep home schooling her five-year-old Hudson who is in year one at Surat State School, alongside her other son Mac, 4 who is in kindergarten.
"I have made the decision on my own to keep him home at this stage and not to rush back," she said.
"I will wait to see what happens and see whether there is a spike in cases, and then re-evaluate after a few weeks."
The steps to full resumption of school are:
•May 11: Kindy, Prep, Years 1, 11 and 12 return to school
•May 15: Assess statewide response to easing of restrictions
•May 25: Proposed reopening to remaining students in remaining grades
Ms Bright fears that easing restrictions coming into Australian winter is premature, as colder months appear to be the most dangerous time for Covid-19 to spread.
"We are putting our kids at risk in the schools when there have been cases elsewhere by opening the schools up again during winter," she said.
"I don't see why schools should be any different to other places like restaurant or cinemas which we are still not allowed to go to yet.
"And it's not just the fact that all the children will be back together, we have to think of our the teachers, particularly the older teachers that are in that vulnerable age bracket."
Ms Bright also has concerns that the Premier hasn't made any mention of not sending children back that have compromised immune systems or respiratory issues.
"Hudson gets asthma and in the past has had upper respiratory issues and this is a virus that attracts the upper respiratory," she said.
"There have been a couple of cases in primary schools overseas from when they opened the schools again in the winter months, so I'm just not feeling 100 per cent about sending Hudson back yet knowing this."
Ms Bright has praised the efforts of Surat State School for making it a smooth transition into home schooling, and equipping her with the resources to continue doing so.
"We're very lucky to have a school that has small classes, with great teachers and teacher's aid that are just really willing to help," she said.
"Those first years are really important so it's great they've given us all the support we need."