The state government is thus avoiding the switch to the so-called scenario C, pure distance teaching. For young students in particular, learning in school is particularly important, as is contact with their peers, as Education Minister Grant Hendrik Tonne (SPD) emphasized in a press conference on Wednesday. In Lower Saxony, the same regulation applies as in the run-up to Christmas. However, the expectation is that the classes will empty considerably, according to Prime Minister Stephan Weil (SPD). Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the Prime Minister agreed yesterday, after long discussions, to keep schools closed in principle and to handle this area in a “restrictive” manner. Weil then announced that it would revise the regulation at elementary schools – alternating lessons according to scenario B.
The Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs will therefore issue an ordinance according to which companies must enable their employees to work from home. Restriction: if the activities permit. Where work in presence is still required, the occupancy must be reduced for work areas in a confined space or FFP2 masks must be made available. Weil welcomed the decision. He asked those responsible in the Lower Saxony companies and other institutions to make working or service hours even more flexible than before for those employees who cannot work in the home office. “We’ll do the same in the state administration,” said Weil. “Together, we must succeed in drastically reducing the risk of infection associated with full buses and trains.”
Medical masks are becoming the standard
In order to reduce the risk of infection, especially in local public transport and in supermarkets, the country chiefs and the Chancellor agreed to tighten the mask requirement. In both areas, medical masks – including what are known as surgical masks or FFP2 masks – are mandatory. So-called everyday masks made of fabric are no longer sufficient. Before the Corona summit, the Lower Saxony state chancellery expressed concerns about a sole FFP2 mask requirement, because then it would have to be ensured that enough free copies are available. So-called surgical masks, on the other hand, are much cheaper.
Nursing carers must wear FFP2 masks
For the staff in retirement and care facilities, an FFP2 mask is required when contacting residents, as the State Chancellery announced. In addition, the current Lower Saxony ordinance already stipulates mandatory tests for all employees several times a week. Relatives and friends of the residents must already have a negative rapid test carried out on each visit with a 7-day incidence of more than 50 new infections, it said.
General exit restrictions do not come
The country-wide exit restrictions that were discussed by Chancellor Merkel before the summit, including outside of Corona hotspots, were not decided. According to information from the groups of participants, only one passage was agreed, according to which countries and districts in regions with high numbers of infections can impose additional measures. That is in the interests of the state government. “In all of Lower Saxony we are now at an incidence of just under 100,” Weil told the Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung (Tuesday edition), “therefore I currently do not consider nationwide night curfews to be justified.” Only one in cities and counties with an incidence of more than 200 new corona infections per 100,000 inhabitants and week would such a measure make sense and would be accepted by the people, Weil said.
Weil considers new resolutions to be sufficient
Prime Minister Weil assumes that the measures adopted by the federal and state governments to contain the corona virus will be sufficient. “After everything we see, yes,” he says in response to a question on ARD.
The re is a “steadily reduced number of infections”. However, the mutations of the coronavirus are a “great unknown”.
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Saxony exempts primary school students compulsory attendance NDRde news