Tuesday, 25 May 2021
Department of Education and Skills
334. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if she will clarify the discrepancy between the symptoms being used to advise Covid-19 self-isolation in schools among pupils and the advice being offered to the general public (details supplied); and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27528/21]
School COVID-19 Response Plans have been revised in line with the ‘Work Safely Protocol’ which reflects the Government’s Resilience and Recovery 2021-2021: Plan for Living with COVID-19, in addition to public health advice to prevent the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in the school environment.
One of the key messages to manage the risks of COVID-19 in school is to do everything practical to avoid the introduction of COVID-19 into the school. If infection is not introduced it cannot be spread. In this regard significant emphasis has been placed consistently on the message to staff, students and the whole school community to ‘stay at home if you are not well’.
The COVID-19 response plan identifies four commonly known symptoms of COVID-19, namely ‘high temperature’, ‘cough’, ‘shortness of breath or breathing difficulties’ and ‘loss of small, of taste or distortion of taste’. The plan advises readers to refer to the HSE website for the complete list of symptoms of COVID-19.
Readers are also advised that infection with the virus that causes COVID-19 can cause illness, ranging from mild to severe, and the symptoms can be similar to those of cold and flu.