***Update, 9.30am Friday**
This is a press release from GIS:
Mid-term COVID-19 Guidance from CMO
Chief Medical Officer Dr. John Lee issued a video message today (Thursday, 7 October 2021) offering some COVID-19 safety guidance for families over the upcoming early mid-term break for Government schools, which was brought forward in order to help prevent the coronavirus from spreading further within local schools on Grand Cayman.
Dr. Lee advised families to stay safe by not mixing with other households, children and families over the break to assist in the effort to break the current cycle of transmission.
He also discussed upcoming availability in schools of lateral flow antigen tests for the latter half of the school term. He explained that the simple tests can be done at home and school. He said this would help to identify COVID -19 cases in a timelier manner while also minimising impact on the larger school communities by limiting closures.
Dr. Lee said more details on the lateral flow tests would be rolled out in due course. Delivery of the tests for trials to begin may come as early as within the next two weeks, he said.
The Chief Medical Officer also reminded the public to contact the Flu Hotline or their family doctor if they’re feeling ill with what could be COVID symptoms and to immediately self-isolate.
Due to the COVID-19 outbreak affecting multiple schools on Grand Cayman, the government is closing public schools on the island early for midterm break.
John Gray and Clifton Hunter High Schools will close Thursday, 7 Oct.
Grand Cayman’s primary schools will close Monday, 11 Oct., along with CIFEC and Lighthouse School.
Sister Islands schools will follow the original schedule and close Thursday, 14 Oct.
All schools will reopen 25 Oct.
The following is a press release from the Ministry of Education:
Education Ministry Brings Forward Start of Mid-Term Break in Grand Cayman Schools
The Ministry of Education has brought forward the dates when government primary and secondary schools, located on Grand Cayman will close for midterm break.
John Gray and Clifton Hunter High Schools are now scheduled to close on Thursday, 7 October.
The Cayman Islands Further Education Centre (CIFEC), primary schools on Grand Cayman and the Lighthouse School will close for their mid-term break on Monday, 11 October 2021.
“Over the past few weeks, a growing number of teachers have been required by Public Health to isolate. In fact, the teaching staff at John Gray and Clifton Hunter has now been reduced by 16 persons for one reason or another. By closing our schools a few days earlier than initially scheduled, we hope to reduce the risk of schools having insufficient staff to function effectively,” said Education Minister Juliana O-Connor-Connolly.
The Education Minister continued, “We in the Ministry of Education are cognizant of the fact that the closures, in particular, those that commence tomorrow will be somewhat inconvenient to a number of our parents, and for that, we sincerely apologise. Your understanding at this time is greatly appreciated.”
Chief Medical Officer Dr. John Lee welcomed the early school closures.
“This course of action will certainly reduce the likely spread of the COVID 19 virus among our children, many of whom are unvaccinated, and lessen the need for in-school testing,” Dr. Lee stated. “I also wish to remind those with symptoms of concern to contact their usual healthcare provider or the Flu Hotline on 1-800-534-8600 or 345-947-3077, or 345-925-6327 or firstname.lastname@example.org.”
The Ministry of Education further announced that the start date for mid-term break for schools on the Sister Islands remains unchanged and begins on Thursday, 14 October.
Government schools on Grand Cayman and the Sister Islands will reopen on Monday, 25 October, as previously scheduled.
To learn more or to access the complete 2021/2022 academic school calendar, visit https://schools.edu.ky/Pages/Home.aspx.