The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, says schools should carry out weekly risk assessments while states and local governments are to conduct monthly and quarterly risk assessments.
Mrs Elsie Ilori, Head, Department of Surveillance and Epidemiology, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, announced this on Thursday in Abuja at the joint PTF briefing on COVID-19.
She said that the PTF has continued to educate the public on measures to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19.
“We have also continued to review the situation in other countries that have re-opened schools. We also receive guidance from WHO and other public health authorities.
“If schools carefully coordinate, plan and put the required safety measures in place before reopening, there is lesser risk of COVID-19 cases in school settings.
“We are working closely with the Federal Ministry of Education, PTF-COVID-19, States and our partners to ensure that the required safety measures are in place to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on our schools.
“The PTF-COVID-19 and Federal Ministry of Education have mandated schools to conduct periodic (weekly) risk assessments, while States and local governments are to conduct monthly and quarterly risk assessment respectively.
“This will help to promptly address the gaps that may exist in reducing the risk of COVID-19 spread in schools.
“Beyond this, local governments have been advised to set up multi-sectoral school health committees dedicated to supporting and monitoring the implementation of safety protocols in the schools,” she said.
According to Ilori, safe school reopening required the collective efforts of all, including parents, teachers, school authorities, communities, civil society organisations and the media.
The PTF advised school managements against conducting tests for returning students.
“The focus should be on monitoring and careful observation of students with all non-pharmaceutical measures in place,” she said.