Children should return to school without delay, says senior researcher
Two economics faculty members at the University of Stellenbosch put together a report looking more generally at children of school-going age and hones in on children that fall into the 0 to 6 age group.
Professor Servaas van der Berg and Dr Nic Spaull have written a report titled “Counting the Cost: COVID-19 school closures in South Africa and its impact on children.”
Joanne Joseph spoke to Prof Spaull about some of the findings.
The report reveals that nearly one million children are left at home alone.
I think it's one of the things that was underappreciated and not really taken into account when we reopened the economy without also reopening ECD centres, creches and primary schools.Dr Nic Spaull, Senior researcher - Stellenbosch University
That million children are only those that are under the age of six, but if we look at those under the age of 15, you are looking at double that number ... because there is no other adult caregiver expect someone that has a job.Dr Nic Spaull, Senior researcher - Stellenbosch University
Spaull says after reviewing the evidence, keeping children out of school is not in their best interest.
All children should return to schools, creches and ECD centres without any further delay immediately.Dr Nic Spaull, Senior researcher - Stellenbosch University
The reason for this is that there are very large social and economic costs to children that far outweigh the COVID-19 risks that these children and even their teachers will face at school.Dr Nic Spaull, Senior researcher - Stellenbosch University
Click on the link below to hear the full conversation and find out more...
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