As Georgia begins to ease lockdown, reopening of schools needs to be prioritised, says UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund) Georgia in an official statement.
The statement reads that the longer children stay out of school, the more exposed they are to various risks.
Strict measures were taken to help contain the spread of COVID-19 and flatten the curve. There is increasing evidence that children and schools are not the main drivers of the epidemic across countries. In fact, there is no known evidence on the correlation between the rate of disease transmission and whether schools remain open or closed”, says UNICEF Georgia.
UNICEF Georgia says that there is, however, evidence of the negative impact of school closures on children’s physical and mental health, nutrition, safety and learning. When children are out of school for prolonged periods of time, their exposure to physical, emotional and sexual violence increases.
Some of the recommendations the organisation has released in order to help governments reopen schools safely include:
In its statement UNICEF mentions that when schools reopen, every child should have access to school-based health, hygiene, nutrition services. Also, it is important for every child to have access to the internet.