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“Schools will open again on Jan 11,” says Greece’ Gov’t spokesman

Government spokesman Stelios Petsas announced on Sunday that schools open again on January 11. Speaking to Skai TV, Petsas said that “students of all education levels will return to schools on January 11.” He linked the reopening of schools with the decision to shuts down again businesses and services that were opened over the holidays.

“On Saturday a preventive move was announced so that schools will open with safety,” he said.

Ο Κυβερνητικός Εκπρόσωπος μας ενημερώνει ότι: (α) οι τελευταίες αποφάσεις ελήφθησαν βάσει της τρέχουσας επιδημιολογικής εικόνας και (β) η περαιτέρω εφαρμογή των μέτρων θα κριθεί βάσει του αριθμού κρουσμάτων.

He added that with the decision of the “week-long lockdown experts will be facilitated as they will know that the [pandemic] situation will be improved.”

Petsas added that together with the schools also the activities that were shut down (hairdressers, bookstores, retail stores with click away and KTEO) will open again.

  • In the essence Petsas said that the latest decisions were taken based on the current epidemiological situation and that the further implementation of restrictions will be decided according to the number of infections. Note that testing has been largely decreased over the holidays to 3,000 from 15,000 daily in the previous period.

In addition, he did not bother to explain who took the decision for the reopening of the schools and based on what data on the course of the pandemic.

According to state broadcaster ERT on Sunday, the Health Ministry committee of experts will meet tomorrow, Monday, with the Education Minister to evaluate the latest epidemiological data and take the final decisions.

Health experts have expressed skepticism about schools being able to reopen safely to students this month, particularly in areas with high rates of coronavirus transmission.

Athanasios Exadaktylos, president of the Panhellenic Medical Association and member of the Health Ministry’s committee of experts, said on Thursday (Dec 31) that there was no consensus among surveys assessing the role of schools in coronavirus transmission. He added that research in the United Kingdom suggests that the virus’ new variant spread mostly between pupils at schools.

So far no virus mutation of the UK kind has been detected in Greece.

Referring to public pressure for the reopening of schools, Exadaktylos said that “if, as a society, we are willing to pay the price of not abiding by measures because we are tired, this is a decision for society to take.”

“We as doctors cannot say it is safe, but nor is it up to us to say what needs to be closed and for how long,” he added.

It should be recalled that Covid-19 testing fell extremely short over the Christmas and New Year holidays with the effect that the daily infections numbers to hardly correspond to the real situation in the country.

Oppositions parties have slammed the government for “imposing restrictions, opening and closing business sectors without a plan” thus creating confusion among citizens with ambiguous messages.”

PS Friends and relatives ask: if just 262 new infections on Jan 2, why stricter lockdown then? The government does not feel the need to give specific answers.

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2 comments

  1. 262 positive out of 3,000 tested is quite shocking, actually…

  2. FREE of charge MASS testing has to he offered for ALL people in Greece. 30% of COVID POSITIVE don’t feel ill and go to work, drive with metro. WITHOUT mass testing to QUARANTINE ALL INFECTED people COVID can NOT be brought down. Wealthy and organized countries like Germany and Austria do it.