National calls for immediate reopening of schools

Anna Whyte
Source: 1News

National is calling for the immediate reopening of schools “to get school students back on track and make up for lost class time”.

Judith Collins - file.

The party's education plan also includes a proposal for an "absolute focus" on attendance.

National's plan also looked at truancy, with a pledge to set attendance targets and publish attendance data online.

It wanted to provide up to $400 per student to schools to spend on 'catch up' initiatives in 2022, require regular assessment in reading, writing and maths and at least one hour each of maths and literacy a day for years 1-10.

The Government has set an indicative date of November 15 for the return of primary schools in Level 3, while it gathers advice around a possible staged approach of the younger students returning to school.

Years 11-13 secondary students returned to schools in Auckland on October 26, while no date has yet been given for the return for Year 9s and 10s (13 to 14-year-olds).

National's Judith Collins said children in areas of heightened alert levels had missed out on too much critical class time.

"The disengagement, loss of social connection and significant milestones now outweighs the risk of reopening schools," she said.

It was reported on Sunday that a student at Auckland's Avondale College tested positive for Covid-19, while another at Liston College in Henderson tested positive last week.

Two other Auckland high schools, Mcleans College and Mount Albert Grammar, were forced to close on November 1 after Covid cases were detected.