Wednesday, January 06, 2021
Differences in primary schools
Which rules apply to schools and day-care centers in which federal state
After the lockdown has been extended, a comprehensive return to the usual classroom teaching is out of the question. But the federal states interpret the requirements differently. While some rely on distance learning for the time being, a state government is planning to open it soon.
Baden-Württemberg: The Baden-Württemberg state government announced that daycare centers and primary schools might open from January 18. This is provided by the joint federal and state resolution in the event that the pandemic allows this. Prime Minister Winfried Kretschmann named this as a “goal” on Tuesday evening. However, it could only be decided next week on the basis of the current infection numbers whether this is “justifiable”.
Bayern: In view of the current infection situation, Bavaria is sticking to its previous course. According to Prime Minister Markus Söder, there will be no easing in schools and daycare centers in January. “We are not allowed to cancel prematurely,” he said on Twitter. For the time being, even after the end of the winter holidays, there will only be distance learning plus emergency care for younger children. Exceptions also apply here for graduating classes. Classroom teaching in schools should resume from February, initially in primary schools. The carnival holidays should be used to catch up on unusual course material.
Berlin: The schools in the capital will remain largely closed for the time being. “As of January 11, there will still be no regular classes at Berlin schools,” said Senator for Culture and Mayor Klaus Lederer after a special session of the Senate. However, from January 11, according to the education administration, there will be alternating classes for the graduation-relevant classes. The learning groups should be a maximum of half as large as usual. From January 18, there will be at least three hours of lessons a day in classes 1 to 3 in the school, also in groups that are no more than half the size of the usual. In the next step, this rule will be extended to grades 4 to 6 from January 25th.
Brandenburg: The state government does not want to make a final decision on the extension and tightening of the corona restrictions until Friday. This said government spokesman Florian Engels. The agreements of the heads of government at the federal and state levels would have to be implemented in state law. “This applies in particular to the restrictions on the range of motion from regions with high numbers of infections and the school sector, but also to other issues,” said Engels.
Bremen: In Bremen, the school attendance requirement remains suspended even after the end of the Christmas holidays on Friday. This allows parents to decide for themselves whether they want to send their children to school.
Hamburg: Compulsory attendance at schools in the Hanseatic city is no longer required. The students should be taught online if possible, but can continue to be supervised. “Distance learning is the model. We don’t send children away,” said school senator Ties Rabe. If necessary, parents can also continue to send their children to day care centers if they cannot look after them at home.
Hessen: In Hesse there were initially no more detailed decisions. According to Prime Minister Volker Bouffier, daycare centers and primary schools should open there after the crisis summit on Tuesday. Secondary schools, however, should remain closed. The cabinet meets this Wednesday.
Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania: In Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, which has so far been relatively little affected by the pandemic, daycare centers and primary schools are to remain open. “We will continue as before,” said Prime Minister Manuela Schwesig to the NDR. Parents are expressly urged to keep their children at home – but schools remain open for grades one to six. The pupils should only come if care at home is not possible. From grade seven, further distance lessons are planned. According to the SPD politician, the country wants to examine whether, in regions with an incidence value of under 50, an earlier return to face-to-face models in other grades could be an option as early as January 18.
Lower Saxony: Lower Saxony allows all secondary schools in accordance with the federal-state resolutions until the end of the month, but will be less strict with primary schools. According to the State Ministry of Education, after the end of the Christmas break, elementary school students will initially receive one week of distance learning at home from next Monday and will switch to an alternate model from January 18, where face-to-face and digital lessons alternate at half class size.
North Rhine-Westphalia: There will be no face-to-face classes in the North Rhine-Westphalian schools in January. From next week – but no later than Wednesday – the children will learn in distance lessons, announced NRW School Minister Yvonne Gebauer. There should be childcare offers in schools for children in the first to sixth grade. Day care centers are to go into “restricted pandemic operations” by the end of January. NRW Family Minister Joachim Stamp appealed to parents to look after their children at home. If this does not work, children should be looked after in fixed groups in the facilities from Monday.
Rhineland-Palatinate: Distance learning, which was previously planned to run until January 15, will be extended to January 22, as Minister of Education Stefanie Hubig announced. Schools remain open if there is a special need for care. As soon as the infection numbers go down and are more resilient than now, the schools should switch to alternating classes for grades 1 to 6 in the last week of January. The attendance requirement for the pupils is to be lifted. From January 15th, there will be a special regulation for the final classes with the aim of teaching them in divided groups with distance rules at school. Apprentices should also be able to come to school more often before their final theses. The day-care centers remain open for boys and girls whose parents cannot provide care. Children with a special need for support should also be able to continue attending daycare.
Saarland: As a result of the lockdown extension, the Saarland has not yet announced any new rules. Since December 16, the stipulation applies that all children and young people should stay at home if possible. The schools have switched to distance and distance learning, the compulsory attendance has been lifted. There are offers for grades one to six if care at home is not possible. Schoolchildren who do not have suitable work opportunities in their own four walls should also be able to be looked after in the schools. Care at home is also recommended for daycare centers, but emergency operation should be available.
Saxony: In Saxony, which has been particularly hard hit by the pandemic, schools and daycare centers will remain completely closed until at least February 8th. According to the state government, all pupils will initially stay at home until January 31st for distance lessons, exceptions only apply to graduating classes of older age groups. There is emergency care for primary school and daycare children. This is followed by the winter holidays brought forward until February 8th, the second week of holidays should then be made up in the Holy Week before Easter. The schools should only open if the infection situation allows – and only in a rotating shift system.
Saxony-Anhalt: For the children and young people, the Christmas holidays have been extended to the weekend. As of Monday, very few of them will return to schools. The state government decided that the schools will be closed due to the continued tense infection situation. Only the final classes should be taught face-to-face whenever possible. Distance learning should be offered for everyone else. Parents with systemically relevant professions can have children in the first to sixth grades in schools. Despite the announced school closings, teachers and other staff can voluntarily be tested for the corona virus from Thursday. One reason for this is that a lot of staff come together in many schools by the weekend to organize classes after the holidays.
Schleswig-Holstein: Most of the students in Schleswig-Holstein are not taught in schools after the Christmas break until the end of January. From January 11th, there will be distance learning, and classes in schools have been suspended, said Minister of Education Karin Prien in Kiel. This also applies to vocational schools. The graduates are an exception. They should receive appropriate learning and preparation offers in schools from Monday. As in the spring, there will also be emergency care for students in grades one to six. Prien said there could be first steps to resume classroom teaching before the end of January. The prerequisite is that the number of new infections in Schleswig-Holstein is permanently well below the limit of 50 per 100,000 inhabitants per week.
Thuringia: Schools and daycare centers in the equally badly affected neighboring state of Thuringia will remain completely closed until the end of January, as decided by the state government in Erfurt. The winter holidays should be brought forward to the last week of January and there should also be no face-to-face classes in the first week of February. According to the current state of planning, “restricted regular operations” will not start again until mid-February.