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Grandparents weigh in on Lockdown/Back to school debate

Posted By Angela W / May 28, 2020 / 0 Comments

As South Africans prepare to go down to Lockdown Level 3
(28 May 2020),
the debate of whether children should return to school
is raging. 

Grandparents weigh in on the debate.
What do grandparents,
especially those who help care for their grandchildren, feel?


Children and schoolchildren


The Minister of Education in South Africa, Angie Motshekga has indicated that schools throughout the country will re-open for Grade 12’s from Monday 1 June 2020.  This follows intensive preparation by various departments to ensure that schools are properly sanitised and that schools receive PPE for staff and teachers. But is this enough?

Should we be exposing our grandchildren/children to the possibility of contracting this virus?  There is the potential danger of spreading the virus to families, and grandparents who care for grandchildren, who have taken great care to self-isolate for the last 60 days? This question is being asked by many.


You’ve Earned It Facebook members have this to say:


I feel it’s irresponsible to let them go back.  Most don’t have after care and grandparents look after children and now these children will be exposed and bring it into our homes. I understand that they need to get the school year going but don’t know how to do it.

I am a grandmother that helps out with my grandchildren as both of my daughters work. I spend 3 days at the one daughter’s house and 2 days at the other daughter’s house.   I don’t know how safe this is….but what can one do in times like this.  I am 64 and in good health (I think!)

I am an essential service employee. When my husband is able to get back out there, my children will be going to my parents (their grandparents). We are following all the recommended guidelines, and are healthy. Life needs to carry on.

My daughter is a teacher.  She has gone back to school and I am looking after her children.  I feel that this virus is not going anywhere soon, and we can’t live our lives locked away. Life has to carry on for everyone’s sake. People are social creatures and cannot live in isolation!

I agree 100%….at some stage, we have to get back to normal



Good Party secretary-general Brett Herron said
there was so much not known about the virus


At one point there was a generally held view that children were not at risk for infection and less likely to transmit the virus. This view is increasingly being disputed and challenged by scientists as more data and evidence becomes available.”

He said schools should reopen when people were confident teachers and front-line workers were adequately protected, when families were fully aware of the risks and how to manage them, and there was proper preparation of school environments.


A Cape Town teacher had this to say: 


I am quite happy to come back and prepare the school for our students, and to teach again.  However, it’s a very stressful time.  Teachers with co-morbidities cannot come back to school, and therefore we need to step in to assist with those classes.  I see a need for matrics to go back to school, but do not think it is safe for the other grades at this particular time (end of May 2020).  We need to wait until we have reached our peak.  Safety needs to come first. 


What do you think?



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Relevant articles:

Level 3 lockdown – what it means to SA seniors

Could I have COVID-19 and not know?

Seniors, Insomnia and The Pandemic

Time for seniors to mask up



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