Municipal schools in Tallinn will send students in grades 4-8 to remote learning this week after a city government decision last week, but Tallinn French Lyceum and the Tallinn Secondary School of Science have decided to stick with contact learning.
Lasnamäe High School director Andrei Kante spent his Sunday at the schoolhouse to learn more about the rapid tests the school will have to put to use from Monday. He told ETV's daily affairs show "Aktuaalne kaamera" that the move to remote learning was the correct one.
"I think it was a very justified decision, because the confusion - if we put it mildly - which awaits us from [Monday] in terms of quarantine rules and testing will not have a good effect on our situation," Kante said.
For the week after the school break, from November 1-5, students in grades 4 to 8 in Tallinn municipal schools will be sent to remote learning. Students in grades 1 to 3 and grades 9 to 12, as well as students with special educational needs will continue in contact learning.
Tallinn French Lyceum and the Tallinn Secondary School of Science made a decision to stick with contact learning. "We only had one consideration - what is best for the children. And remote learning is very bad for them," said lyceum director Peter Pedak.
Tallinn Education Department director Andres Pajula said the remote learning decision was made in coordination with the schools.
"It is certainly sad to see the schools making this decision, because if we are being honest, school managers were solidary making this decision and called it a solid decision to fight against the illness together," Pajula said.
Reform Party deputy chairman and MP Jürgen Ligi wrote on social media over the weekend that Tallinn city government pressured schools that wanted to continue with contact learning. Ligi did not wish to name the schools in question.
"I know of a specific example and also know that this is being mentioned for other schools," Ligi said.
Tallinn French Lyceum director Peter Pedak said the school did not have any issues after choosing to stick with contact learning. "Because it was left up for the schools to decide. All school managers gave out directives on study organization," the director said.
During the distance learning period, hobby activities in municipal hobby schools for students in grades 4 to 8 also do not take place.
There were a total of 48 coronavirus outbreaks in 57 Tallinn schools last week, with a total of almost 1,000 infected. The outbreaks were present in 92 classes and nearly 70 teachers were ill or in isolation.
Editor: Kristjan Kallaste