The Corona rules in Bavaria’s schools at a glance – Bavaria

Everyone should go to school – that is the declared goal of the state government. To this end, at the beginning of the school year, in accordance with student, parent and teacher associations, it stipulated that there would be regular operations in general, albeit with strict hygiene requirements. This is generally seen as the lesser evil compared to digital teaching at home, so-called homeschooling. What are the rules that currently apply to the approximately 6200 Bavarian schools? An overview.

Where does the mask requirement apply?

After the autumn break, i.e. from November 9th, all teachers and all pupils must generally wear a mask on the school premises and in class. Even in elementary schools. Before that, it depended on the prevailing local infection; this condition no longer exists in the current Bavarian Infection Protection Measures Ordinance.

That means: the mask requirement applies on the whole school premises, in the corridors, in the playground and also in the classrooms. Only those people do not have to adhere to it, for whom wearing a mouth and nose cover “is not possible or unreasonable due to a disability or for health reasons”. Students who ignore the mask requirement can be sent home. The independent cities and districts can, however, waive the mask requirement in class with a special permit – the city of Munich and some districts have done this for their primary schools, for example.

When does homeschooling happen?

The Ministry of Culture has developed a three-step plan that provides for certain measures, depending on the number of infections. In level 3, i.e. with a seven-day incidence of 50 or more, a minimum distance of 1.50 meters should consequently be maintained in the rooms. Since this is not possible in very few classrooms, this actually means: face-to-face lessons in small groups and distance lessons at home alternate. The classes are divided, the students take turns going to school or homeschooling. However, this measure is not an automatic mechanism, but a general recommendation by the Ministry of Culture. The respective health department decides on a case-by-case basis what exactly applies in a city or in a district with increasing numbers of infections.

Whole classes are repeatedly quarantined because of a Covid case, and sometimes entire schools are closed, but very few municipalities have so far ordered nationwide homeschooling. The limit of 50 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants has been exceeded within a week since mid-October almost everywhere in Bavaria, and since the beginning of November even across the board. For critics of the current Corona school policy, this is evidence of poor leadership and unclear guidelines from the Ministry of Culture.

How is it in the classrooms?

In regular operation, i.e. with an incidence value of less than 35, students do not have to keep a distance from one another in the classroom. However, there is a one and a half meter distance between them and the teachers. The children should sit at individual tables facing the front and not share any materials such as rulers or pens. If groups mix, as in ethics, religion or foreign language classes, the students in one class should sit together and keep their distance from the other group. Rooms must be ventilated at least every 45 minutes for at least five minutes, tilted windows are not enough. In modern schools with ventilation systems, the municipalities responsible for equipping the buildings should reprogram the systems for more fresh air and open locked windows during the holidays.

If the incidence value is between 35 and 50 (level 2), the local health department can decide to forego the minimum distance in the classroom anyway. If it is over 50 (level 3), it should actually make the minimum distance mandatory – as described above, this rarely happens.

Which rules apply on the school premises?

Mask requirement and distance apply everywhere on the school premises. In order to keep the mix of all pupils to a minimum and so that infections remain traceable, the schools must mark walking routes and equalize breaks and lesson times. In the school yard and in the cafeteria, children of one class or the upper school are allowed to be together, but must keep their distance from other groups. A distance of 1.5 meters also applies in queues in front of the kiosk or in front of the toilets. Paper towels must be laid out there, hand-held blowers are prohibited because of the aerosols.

When do children have to stay at home?

Mild cold symptoms: Students with a cold and “occasional cough” are only allowed to go back to school if they have not developed a fever after 24 hours. Anyone who still shows up at school must be picked up again. If the seven-day incidence on site is more than 50, students must also either present a doctor’s certificate or a negative corona test. An exception applies to elementary school students: As in daycare centers, they are also allowed to go to school with a sniff nose – as long as the seven-day incidence does not exceed 50.

Flu-like symptoms: Sick pupils with symptoms such as fever, cough or earache are only allowed to go back to school if they have been symptom-free for 24 hours and fever-free for 36 hours. If the seven-day incidence is higher than 50, you need a negative corona test or a medical certificate in order to be able to go back to class.

When are schools closed, when are individual classes?

If a pupil falls ill with Covid-19, his or her class is sent home as a whole and has to be quarantined for two weeks. After that, classes will take place again, unless the local health department decides otherwise. If a teacher falls ill, he or she is not allowed to teach and has to be quarantined. The health department will decide whether this also applies to other teachers and students.

If a Covid-19 case occurs in a senior year, the entire class or the entire senior year is tested for corona. The students have to be in quarantine, but they can interrupt it if a final exam is due – for these then stricter hygiene requirements apply.

Closing schools completely, as happened across the board in spring 2020, should be an exception, according to the Ministry of Culture. It depends on the number of infections, ultimately the local health department decides. Then the students are taught what is known as homeschooling, the Ministry speaks of “distance teaching”.

Are there any subject lessons?

Physics, chemistry, music and sports are allowed again this school year subject to certain conditions. Teachers decide whether and, if so, which sport is possible. If the incidence rises above 35, older students are only allowed to exercise without a mask if they keep their distance. If the infection rate rises to more than 50, elementary and special school students must also wear masks and keep their distance. Distance applies in the changing rooms; Showering is only possible under the strictest conditions.

For example, if children cannot wash their hands after every jump on parallel bars or bars, all students have to do this before and after the sports lesson. Thorough cleaning after each use also applies to computer rooms, devices in chemistry or physics and musical instruments. Aerosol emissions are particularly high in music lessons. Therefore, students must keep a distance of two meters when singing and in instrumental lessons with wind instruments. After each wind lesson, the room must be aired for 15 minutes. Singers should sing staggered in one direction. Music rooms must be ventilated for ten minutes every 20 minutes.

What applies on the way to school?

A mask is required in local public transport and on school buses. If young people go or cycle to school, they should keep their distance. The Free State pays more money for additional amplifier school buses.


Corona – the anger of Bavaria’s parents’ associations – Bavaria

Most recently, the Bavarian Teachers’ Association (BLLV) had harshly criticized. Now parents and students are also losing patience with the state government. Minister of Education Michael Piazolo (FW) received fire letters from several associations that the SZ had on Monday morning. “We parents will not accept our children becoming losers as a result of the pandemic,” reads the letter from the State Parents ‘Association of High Schools (LEV) and the Bavarian Parents’ Association (BEV). The state student council complains that there is a “note hunt”, sees a need for improvement in the hygiene plan and criticizes the fact that there is still no solution in sight to the data protection problem at Microsoft Teams. Many schools use this program for digital teaching. The license expires at the end of December.

Internally, several associations even discussed calling for Piazolo to resign. This demand was not included in the letters. But according to SZ information, members in various committees have sharply criticized the crisis management of the Minister of Education. LEV boss Susanne Arndt confirms that there are these demands in some committees. Arndt does not go that far, but she also says that the measure is full. There is a lack of concrete guidance and clear instructions that one can rely on. The rules of the corona traffic light are just one example. Actually, as of the seven-day incidence of 50, which has now been exceeded everywhere, the classes should be divided and sent in alternation between digital distance and school lessons. In fact, Bavaria as a whole is even more than 100, only a few districts and urban districts are significantly less than 100, but hardly any region divides the classes. She knows that distance learning is not a substitute for school, says Arndt. But far too little progress is being made with digitization, “digital chaos” prevails. There is a budget available for loan equipment and air purification systems, but it does not seem to be reaching many schools.

“As much normality as possible, with as much health protection as necessary,” said Piazolo as the motto for the current school year. Schools, universities and daycare centers are also open in the partial lockdown. They are “the last to close and the first to reopen”, emphasized Piazolo and Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) recently, announced bonuses for teachers and school principals – and demanded lower expectations of schools and at the same time maximum flexibility from schools , for the benefit of the children. That sounds good, many want to hear that. It scares others. Even in the associations there are those for whom masks are too strict in schools and others who want maximum safety. He knows that he can’t please everyone, says Piazolo. Meanwhile, the mood in the schools is apparently changing.

Since the summer holidays they have been checking “what the red ink can do”

Classes have to be quarantined again and again, there is talk of chaos. The pressure is enormous, complain parents and students. The number of exams has increased significantly. Teachers don’t know when to switch back to distance teaching, so grades would be given in chord. One of the letters to Piazolo said in one of the letters to Piazolo that they have been checking “what the red ink can do” since the summer holidays. It is time to set priorities, urge the associations and suggest that the curriculum be thinned out temporarily. Which subjects are essential? Which content can be omitted? There were no clear announcements. “Nobody can do everything in half the time,” write the parent associations.

Already in September it should have been uniformly checked nationwide what the students missed during the first Corona wave – without additional printing of grades. Piazolo had announced these “learning level surveys”, but apparently every school handles it differently. And the fact that children from educationally disadvantaged homes are not granted compensation for disadvantages violates the constitutional right to equal opportunities from the point of view of the parents’ associations. Too often, the on-site experiences do not match what Piazolo announces in his press conferences, criticize the associations. There is no serious dialogue. The concerns of many families are hardly taken into account in the ministry, says LEV chairman Arndt. “As parents, we are always only supplicants, never partners at eye level.” She has not heard from the minister since the school summit at the end of August. The concept of the educational partnership degenerated into a political phrase.

“Far too few results followed the big announcements,” says state student spokesman Joshua Grasmüller. Air filters for the classroom, additional school buses, concepts for hybrid lessons, tablets and laptops for the students: the second lockdown begins and many promises have not been kept. He misses a minister who responds to the fast-moving crisis with the same dynamic.

Some would like to see Piazolo’s predecessor Ludwig Spaenle (CSU) back. But Piazolo is not a polterer like Spaenle was at times. The university professor relies on the experience and expertise of the school principals, trusts in compulsory service and the school law. That was the case with the Fridays for Future protests, as was also evident in the first Corona lockdown: parents, students and teachers demanded clear announcements early on. The differences in support and digital offers were great between schools and teachers. At first nothing came for a long time, then so many ministerial letters that the headmasters groaned. The parents wrote their first fire letter in the summer. Now the sound is much sharper.

Mainly school, the school family seemed to have long agreed on this. Distance learning cannot replace schools, the associations write that too. You see the dilemma, you see the workload in the ministry, you don’t want to scold teachers. But with the increasing numbers of infections, anger breaks through among parents and students. At the same time, teachers’ associations criticize the fact that the state government only acts according to the wishes of the parents, instead of protecting the staff as an employer. Teachers feel burned out and demand FFP2 masks and air purification systems. Everything for the parents? LEV boss Arndt calls this “ridiculous”.

In a new “school round” on Wednesday, Söder wants to get an idea of ​​the situation in the schools. The parent associations are also invited. So do you get your conversation at eye level? The bandages wave aside. Other participants also always report asking about the individual points of view – and then Söder does what he thinks is right.

Piazolo rejected the criticism on Monday: “Writing open letters, although I am always ready to talk, is strange” – especially since the next school summit will follow on Wednesday. He would like to see cohesion in the crisis. If the associations had asked the ministry, they would have found out that the school inspectorate has long been charged with “monitoring the situation at the schools closely” and “counteracting” too many exams. He was against the “disproportionate concentration of performance surveys”, said Piazolo, and there was no reason for additional pressure and “collecting notes”.


Winter semester in Bavaria: Difficult starting conditions – Bavaria

Chancellor Angela Merkel and the Prime Ministers made a decision on Wednesday that Bavarian universities struggled with for days: Should there be face-to-face events despite the increasing number of infections? Or a purely digital start of the semester? What are the consequences of the nationwide partial lockdown by the end of November? The past few days have been particularly confusing: for twenty hours, the start of the semester in the hybrid operation of classroom and digital teaching seemed to be an illusion. At the universities of applied sciences (HaW), some feared having to close again after four hybrid weeks. Then Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder said on Thursday that universities have priority and that day care centers and schools will remain open.

On Friday the phones glow at the universities, e-mails rush out, video messages are re-recorded. Students, employees, professors, everyone wants to know: What applies on Monday when the winter semester officially begins at the universities – due to Corona two weeks later than usual and with new rules. The constant changes are the most difficult, one hears from several presidential offices. In Augsburg, university boss Sabine Doering-Manteuffel seems surprisingly calm. “Maybe we are slowly hardened,” says the spokeswoman for the eleven Bavarian universities. “We tried to find a unified approach as quickly as possible.” The universities are sticking to the hybrid semester, but the corona rules of each region must be taken into account.

“The universities can decide for themselves how they deal with face-to-face events,” says the Ministry of Science. In general, Minister Bernd Sibler (CSU) is holding back with regulations. The universities have to develop their own hygiene concepts, the following rules are mandatory: A distance of 1.5 meters must be observed in lectures. No more than 200 people are allowed to sit in any hall. Masks are required in all buildings; if the incidence value is over 35, this also applies in the seminar. On Friday, all of Bavaria was on the map of the State Office for Health.

The University of Passau announced the switch to digital operation on Wednesday. Weeks ago, President Ulrich Bartosch was concerned and quarreled about the effects that presence operations could have on the number of infections in Passau: Around a fifth of the 52,000 residents are students who come from all over Germany for the semester. Online teaching is now the norm, with the exception of face-to-face exams and practical events that cannot be carried out online.

Doering-Manteuffel does not go that far in Augsburg, but there too the university cat will initially roam the campus alone. The library and laboratories remain open, but on Friday Doering-Manteuffel sent a “very clear appeal” to their employees to hold as many courses as possible digitally. Especially since Augsburg’s mayor ordered the rules of the partial lockdown from Friday in view of the high number of infections. Numerous classroom offers for freshmen have been canceled, but the student councils have organized a lot digitally, says Doering-Manteuffel. There are online game evenings, digital campus and library tours, timetable advice and a Corona hotline.

At the Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU), too, student councils offer a varied welcome program for first-time students. “A lot is happening below our radar, too. The students organize themselves in Whatsapp or Facebook groups,” says FAU boss Joachim Hornegger. On Friday he too sent an appeal to colleagues to offer as much online teaching as possible. In November there should only be a presence where it is “absolutely necessary”. The endeavor to attract freshmen is important to all universities, they should be given special support and preferably experience presence in order to arrive at the right place in the course.

Basically, Corona does not seem to have a deterrent effect, Minister Sibler reported a new record: 403,000 students are enrolled in Bavaria, 67,750 of them freshmen. In view of the partial lockdown, the student spokesmen of the state branch conference are now calling for the extension of examination deadlines to be discussed again and asking whether the winter semester can even be part of the standard study period. Without these worries, freshmen should be able to experience a “fear-free” start to their studies.

At the European Campus Rottal-Inn, three quarters of the freshmen did not even come to the university. “Only 100 made it to the region, the others are based in their home countries,” says Horst Kunhardt. The Vice President for Health Sciences of the Deggendorf University of Technology (THD) heads the purely English-speaking campus in Pfarrkirchen. His students come from all over the world, many are not allowed to travel due to corona. “We have switched completely to online lectures,” says Kunhardt. Be it bleak on campus, the area is closed.

Kunhardt has known what a lockdown feels like since Tuesday. Strict restrictions apply in the Rottal-Inn district. Still, he sounds relaxed on the phone. The first four weeks at the university went well, the hybrid operation worked, there were CO₂ traffic lights and an app for tracking contacts. Only the offices are manned at the moment, but the phones are hot. Kunhardt’s colleagues translate and explain the rules of the district office, send out newsletters and also provide psychological support. “Special measures in special times,” says Kunhardt. And: “Let’s make the best of it.


Munich: Discussion on higher education law at TU and LMU – Munich

Information often trickles into the home office slowly. Even if it is as important as the upcoming reform of the Bavarian Higher Education Act. Not all professors and lecturers at the two Munich universities of excellence seem to be aware of the status of developments. You and the administrative staff have been busy for weeks preparing for the winter semester including online teaching. Lectures at the Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU) and the Technical University (TU) begin in November.

Meanwhile, they were not inactive elsewhere: on Wednesday last week there was an expert hearing in the Bavarian state parliament on the planned reform of university law. According to inquiries from various faculties, one hears about it only from the media. This may also be due to the fact that the hygiene rules at universities barely allow an exchange about it, for example at a coffee machine. Those who can avoid contact. Key issues papers are not passed on either.

Such a paper on reform was mentioned again and again at the hearing. Even of the invited experts, only a few knew its content. It can now be found on the website of the Ministry of Science. It is 21 pages long and very detailed. The new law should be a “signal for a new departure” with the “model of the greatest possible freedom”, can be read there, for example, often also the word “personal responsibility” for example with regard to self-determination and development. To finance this, the universities should be given a “comprehensive fee collection option”, for example for non-EU foreigners, and thus an incentive to “fundraise” and start up companies.

I thought it was at most a three-page paper, admits a research associate at LMU who does not want to admit his statements by name. He is rather critical of President Bernd Huber. “I think they want the big hit,” he says. That means, among other things, much more power for the university management, which restricted the increased say in the various bodies. “I find benevolent contradiction important – from the professor to the student.”

“I don’t think everyone is aware of what’s coming,” says Margit Weber, canon lawyer and LMU women’s representative for 14 years. In this role, Weber sat as an expert at the hearing in the state parliament. A week later, she is dismayed that the paper only “insufficiently addresses” equality. It must be felt in all areas, she says, not just an appeal is enough. “In Bavaria we have had around 50 percent female students for 30 years, and at LMU even 60 percent.” Overall, there are only 20 percent women professors, one president and only a few vice-presidents. She has long advocated equal appointments in praesidia. Equality must be clearly specified in the new higher education law as an overriding task and as a guiding principle, because that’s the only way something can move, she says. “That would make Munich and Bavaria much more attractive.” For companies, success has long depended on whether they have mixed teams. “How do we want to attract top women from all over the world?”

A professor from her house, whose name should also not appear here, fears a further dismantling of “collegial leadership” at the universities. He also thinks of company structures. “University presidents are made as powerful today as they were at VW under Martin Winterkorn, which led to the emissions scandal at the time.” Today, however, power is more likely to be shared in successful companies. He feels growing frustration among his colleagues because changes have always been in the same direction so far.

No scientist today can have a sufficient overview of research in his field alone. The best are therefore the humble ones who rely on the opinion of their colleagues. Unfortunately, the office of the president all too often attracts people who have a thirst for recognition and are not among the best scientists. In more than 20 years as a professor, he himself was never asked by the management or administration of the university or the ministry about what could improve his research and teaching.

It is unclear whether LMU President Bernd Huber was asked for advice. Among other things, he says that the LMU is very open to university reform in Bavaria and is very interested in being constructively involved in the process. Important guiding principles are more autonomy, more dynamism and more differentiation so that the different universities can develop their full potential. There are of course still many unanswered questions to be discussed in the concrete form of the reform.

Thomas Hofmann, who has been President of the Technical University of Munich for a year, would be happy to contribute his expertise, he says in a telephone conversation. But he has not yet been asked. Even his predecessor Wolfgang Herrmann, who gave verbose answers at the state parliament hearing, had no creative role in the context, says Hofmann. One of the things that is important to him is to speed up the appointment process. Today’s practice, which often takes a year, is completely inefficient, he says. His focus is on lifelong learning, which also includes adult students, and the support of spin-offs, as the TU is already doing.

Regarding the concern of Verdi regional department head Christiane Glas-Kinateder that fixed-term employment contracts would increase due to the conversion of the universities into corporations, as the key issues paper provides, Hofmann replies: “It takes brain circulation.” But you have to be careful that there are not too many temporary relationships. Overall, Hofmann is calling for the universities to have significantly more room for maneuver.

“The perspective of the university management is not necessarily the perspective of all university members,” says Maximilian Frank, TU student and active spokesman for the Bavarian State ASten Conference. It should not be decided only from above. A legal framework must be given to greater personal responsibility. We see ourselves as a corrective, he says. In principle, committees are not a design obstacle.


Third-party workers at Bavaria’s schools: like teachers, only cheap – Bavaria

When her contract expires next year, Tanja Falkner wants to quit. The foreign language correspondent, who doesn’t want her real name published, has been working as a third party at a primary school in Franconia for a good two years. Quite unexpectedly, she was informed in July that her classification had been checked. Means that in future she will work for just under 14 euros gross per hour, for almost five euros less than before. “None of the decision-makers would even set foot in school for this payment,” the 55-year-old outraged in a letter to the Minister of Education, Michael Piazolo, which the SZ has received.

Since 2016, the state government has made around ten million euros available every year for external third-party workers who are supposed to support teachers in promoting the language skills of children from refugee families. For this purpose, lateral entrants are usually employed part-time, who are paid according to the collective agreement for the public service. Internal documents show, however, that for years only provisional regulations applied. At the beginning of this year, the Ministry of Culture received a reprimand from the Bavarian Court of Auditors, which criticized an “insufficient central control”. The regulations that were subsequently enacted sparked a wave of indignation.

A total of around 40 third-party workers were reclassified. Falconer, who was always praised for her work, was suddenly no longer qualified enough. Although she continued to educate herself at her own expense, she slipped three wage levels down. She should even pay back money. “That’s not how you treat a person who works well and is needed,” she says.

The Ministry’s decision also met with incomprehension in the school administration. “That shouldn’t have happened,” admits one official. Contrary to what the ministry has propagated, the elementary and middle schools are already at their personal limits. Every committed employee is needed there, reports the school council, who would prefer to remain anonymous.

What is missing, however, are incentives. 400 of the 1,000 or so third-party workers who were deployed last school year earned between 13 and 16 euros per hour. The Ministry of Culture issues the relevant regulations. What matters is the degree on paper, not the quality of the teaching. Only those who have studied get more money. The ministerial bureaucracy collides with school reality.

“Our children’s education must be worth more than 13 euros to us,” says Ruth Brenner from the Education and Science Union (GEW). The number of third-party workers has again increased significantly in the current school year. “These are pure austerity measures,” criticized the union. In the absence of teachers, new jobs were invented. The system is becoming more and more intransparent and “precarious working conditions” are increasing. 80 percent of the third-party workers are employed on a temporary basis and have to register as unemployed every summer. They lack perspective.

Confronted with the allegations, Minister of Culture Piazolo, who refuses to speak, has a spokesman say: The third-party workers did an “excellent job”. However, they are only intended as support in the classroom and must be grouped according to the “requirements in the public service”. The Court of Auditors “demanded this on a sustained basis”. The GEW, however, refers to the special regulations for salaried teachers, which are clearly better off in the collective agreement. According to the definition, these apply to people who are involved in the “imparting of knowledge and skills within the framework of a school”. This also includes third-party workers, insofar as they are used in lessons, says the union.

For Dorothea Burkard, labor law expert at the Würzburg law firm Bendel und Partner, the criticism of the classification is legally understandable. If the teacher definition applies, the third-party workers would have to be reclassified – and in many cases probably higher. The Ministry of Education, on the other hand, declares that third-party measures are not a matter of teaching, but rather a “supplement to the school offer”.

However, that is a question of perspective. A third-party worker from the Munich area reports that she teaches a German plus class twelve hours a week. Working with children who hardly speak German is extremely challenging. However, this does not show up on her pay slip. “You really get trampled,” she complains. The students Tanja Falkner looks after also have serious language problems. Of course it’s lessons, she says.

According to the GEW and the Bavarian Teachers’ Association (BLLV), it is no exception that third-party workers take on tasks that their contract does not even provide. This is well known, admits an employee of the government of Upper Bavaria, but the authorities deliberately looked the other way. “The system is sick,” she says.


Bavaria: The trouble with the break bread – Bavaria

What you don’t do for the little ones – and that is something you like. With some, however, one wonders whether the elapsed time was not meaningless.

The break bread is an eternal annoyance in the life of parents. In a life without break sandwiches, you could sleep four minutes longer on each individual school day, per snack and child. In the case of three children, the bedtime lost due to school sandwiches roughly amounts to 27,300 minutes if everyone can make it to high school without repeating a class. Makes 455 hours, almost 57 missing eight-hour nights.

Quite a few of these 455 sleepless hours are meaningless elapsed time. Evening check into the lunch box, inside the model “one bite is enough”, with tooth prints in the semicircle. After all, a bite is better than no bite, often the bread looks the same in the evening as it does in the morning, apart from the sausage edges that flap out, which no longer shine as brightly.

Possible reasons for disregarding the parental efforts to smear: You know that I don’t like yellow sausage. (Oh, since when has that been?). Cheese is embarrassing. The salami was with pepper. Or: I didn’t have time, I had to play football during the break.

It is imperative to carefully sniff every school bread. It is best to keep a record of the boxes used and their whereabouts. If you mess it up with the break bread monitoring, you run the risk of finding a green-furry monster at the end of the school year when clearing out the locker, which will immediately crumble to dust if you squeak at it in horror. Another dangerous place for snack bread mummies: the bag with the sporting goods.

With regard to the school bread business, Corona also had its good sides. Finally no more morning smears. Now that the school is starting up again so slowly, it can be said that the snack culture has also changed. Child 1, actually a model pupil when it comes to eating breaks, comes home with a full Tupper can. Eating impossible, there is a mouth protection requirement in the school playground. Child 2, on the other hand, advocate the maximum one-bite theory, has destroyed everything ratzeputz. School yard closed, no football, break feast in the classroom at the individual table, “tasted okay”. Almost runs like clockwork.


Corona in Bavaria: New guidelines for school at home – Bavaria

On Monday, the Ministry of Culture sent several letters to Bavarian schools: The new guidelines are intended to clarify teachers, parents and students. An overview.

Nobody knows how long most of the 1.7 million Bavarian students will continue to study at home. The only thing that is certain is that the students should learn new material in the future and no longer just repeat it as before the Easter holidays. On Monday, the Ministry of Culture sent out several letters to the Bavarian schools, with more to follow in the next few days. New guidelines for learning at home should bring new clarity to teachers, parents and students. Most recently, many had wished for a binding line from the Ministry and complained of overgrowth in the engagement of teachers and the amount of learning. First, the guidelines went to elementary, middle and special schools.

The guidelines differ in detail depending on the type of school. From now on, it applies to everyone that teachers should establish close contact with their students, send them tasks by e-mail or post, continuously give feedback, should check learning progress and weekly and weekly Should create daily plans. Basic knowledge is to be imparted, but not the normal workload. Teachers should take care of children from poorly educated families every day. The class teacher decides who needs this supervision. Tests are allowed, but will only be graded when school hours take place again.

Minister of Education Michael Piazolo (Free Voter) calls the new guidelines “Roadmap”, which is more binding than the recommendations in the weeks before Easter. However, Piazolo doesn’t believe in strict guidelines: “I don’t want to tell every teacher how to do every hour.” Especially since nobody can control it.

Piazolo had already declared at the weekend that high school graduates no longer have to write exams before their exams. On Monday, his house informed the high school directors that the high school graduates can choose how their grades will be achieved for the second half of the year: as an average of all achievements in the qualification phase or from grades that were generated by March 13. From April 27th, high school graduates should only prepare in small groups for their exams, which begin on May 20th.

Many exams are still pending, especially at technical and vocational secondary schools (FOS / BOS). The final exams begin there in mid-June. But Daniel Burger suggests a further postponement of exam dates or deletion of exam material. In a letter to the ministry, the state student spokesman BOS also called for hardship regulations: students who belong to risk groups should be allowed to decide for themselves whether they want to take the exam or have an average grade. For these students, returning to FOS / BOS could be trickier than going to high schools: There will be far more young people at school, because significantly more young people will write a technical or general high school diploma at FOS / BOS than at high schools.

To reconcile this with the strict distance and hygiene rules may pose challenges for some school heads. Dealing with risk groups is not yet answered in the letter to the school heads of the high schools. Information should follow “as soon as possible”, it is said. Piazolo assures that there will be follow-up appointments for students who are at risk groups. Certificate required.

How should hotels and restaurants be supported?:Readers’ discussion


Corona virus: Bavaria’s university hospitals are converting – Bavaria

Until Monday, the statistics looked hopeful at the Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU) clinic in Munich. Until then, 36 patients who had contracted the coronavirus had been treated in an intensive care unit. Seven of them were outside again, none died. The clinic presented these figures on Thursday. What was no longer included in these statistics: Eight new patients have been added since Monday – and two died. Two out of 653 in Bavaria.

Such Covid 19 statistics are now kept in all Bavarian hospitals. It is special, however, that this has also become important in university clinics such as the one in Munich’s Großhadern district. Because in the health system they are actually primarily intended for the treatment of particularly rare or serious diseases and for medical research – as the “spearhead” of the system, as Science Minister Bernd Sibler (CSU) calls it; The normal supply of the population is a matter for the mostly municipal hospitals.

In Bavaria that was true until three weeks ago. Then, at the behest of the Free State, the six Bavarian university clinics had to turn around: let research stay and switch to care in order to create capacity for many more Covid-19 patients.

In Großhadern, for example, this means that there are normally almost 200 intensive care beds there. 44 has been keeping the LMU hospital free for coronavirus cases since the beginning of March. Now it has set up additional intensive care units, converted the recovery room of the outpatient surgery center into one, for example, and trained nurses and doctors. There are now almost 100 intensive care beds there, 26 more are coming, 24 more are in reserve. The situation is similar at the other university clinics in the Free State, with the number of intensive care beds increasing from 600 to a total of 1000. According to the ministry, another 200 could be added.

When a man tested positive for the corona virus in Germany for the first time at the end of January, the municipal hospital in Munich-Schwabing became a quasi-monopolist for Covid-19 treatment for a few weeks. That almost all of the first patients ended up there is because the clinic in the Bavarian hospital plan is the first point of contact for highly infectious diseases. And since many experts feared that many more patients would soon be coming, it was soon heard from Schwabing that one could not take care of this on a permanent basis. In the beginning, this appeal was aimed primarily at the doctors and other hospitals in the Free State not to send all patients to the north of Munich. Four weeks ago, the Mayor of Munich, Dieter Reiter (SPD), demanded that the university clinics also make their contribution.

That was done there and in the responsible ministry of science as Reiters’ attempt at profiling shortly before the local elections, but it still caused some trouble – especially since there were already Covid 19 patients in some houses at that time. For example, an American was admitted to Großhadern on March 4. He came from South Tyrol on a skiing holiday and wanted to fly back from Munich when the new pathogen was detected. In the meantime, the university clinics have not only become part of medical care in Bavaria, they also offer help to municipal hospitals that are heavily polluted in some places. “We still have capacities,” says Bernhard Zwißler, the head of the intensive care unit in Großhadern, “we can be transferred to patients.”

“We still have capacities”: Bernhard Zwißler, the head of the intensive care unit at the LMU clinic in Munich-Großhadern, and his medical director Karl-Walter Jauch (left).

(Photo: Alessandra Schellnegger)

The LMU Clinic has the highest capacity among the Bavarian university clinics. 83 coronavirus patients were there on Thursday morning, a good third of them have to be ventilated in one of the four intensive care units, according to the LMU. Being transferred to one of these “does not amount to a death sentence,” says Zwißler, referring to the low death toll – even if some patients feared it. At the same time, doctors are concerned that some patients with other diseases no longer have the courage to go to a clinic, although it would be necessary – for fear of catching the coronavirus there. A mouth protection obligation applies in the houses, says Karl-Walter Jauch, Medical Director of the LMU Clinic and spokesman for all Bavarian university clinics; the Covid 19 patients would be treated in their own wards. “The risk of infection is minimal.”

Since the number of new cases has increased less and less recently, he currently sees patient care at a “turning point”. You have “the acute situation under control” and must now prepare for a long-lasting pandemic. Four weeks ago, an infected person infected an average of half a dozen other people; in the meantime, this value in Bavaria is only one person, in Munich even less than one. “This does not mean that everything is over,” says Jauch, but it is unlikely that there will be a “big wave”. If this remains so, the researching physicians at the university clinics can also hope that they will be able to resume at least part of their now interrupted studies or laboratory work. However, Jauch does not believe that everything will be back as soon as before: “This pandemic will occupy us for the next months, the next two or three years.”

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