Schools ordered closed due to inclement weather
The Ministry of Education and Youth (MoEY) has ordered the closure of schools on Friday, a measure it says is to prioritise the safety of all students and staff as Jamaica continues to be affected by significant rainfall associated with a weather system passing over the island.
In a release, the MoEY noted that flooding is anticipated and “this may compromise the safety of our key stakeholders as they journey to school and back home.”
It also advised schools to activate the Education in Emergency Plan to support the continuity of learning and the students being actively engaged.
“This will require schools to transition to the remote/online modality for teaching and learning activities for the day. Students without access to the internet or a computer/tablet must be given assigned tasks in their workbooks/textbooks as per their timetable, etc to minimise the disruptions in their learning plan,” the MoEY said.
School administrators are also being asked to initiate all communication channels within their institution to ensure that parents/guardians can be informed promptly and can make necessary arrangements for their child/ward.
For schools designated as a shelter, the MoEY advised administrators that it is important to contact the shelter managers to coordinate access and manage shelter activities in case the need arises.
In the event that the conditions worsen and schools are mobilised as shelters, provisions must be made to secure critical resources while providing access to bathroom facilities and other areas to safely house persons who may be displaced, the ministry said.
The MoEY said it will continue to monitor reports from the Meteorological Service and the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) and update stakeholders accordingly.
The Meteorological Service on Thursday afternoon issued a tropical storm watch for the island.
According to the met office at the time, there was a 60 per cent chance of a tropical storm affecting the island, Prime Minister Andrew Holness said in a post on social media.