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Dr Jenny Harris warns about teachers coffee breaks. What???

Discussion in 'News' started by Corvuscorax20, Aug 24, 2020.

  1. Corvuscorax20

    Corvuscorax20 Senior commenter

    England's deputy chief medical officer. She thinks we should be careful about staff to staff transmission when we go off for coffee breaks. When was the last time you went off for a "coffee break"? I think I might have done that once or twice around 1996, but I could be thinking of training days.:confused:
  2. lunarita

    lunarita Lead commenter

    This might be significant in primary schools - not that primary teachers take more breaks, but because other than breaks, it's easier to keep children in bubbles with their teacher.

    In secondary, different subjects and different groupings make bubbles pretty much impossible to maintain. I thnk the DCMO probably understands less than *** all about secondary schools.
    agathamorse, gill11 and Corvuscorax20 like this.
  3. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Many schools encourage staff to take breaks in the day and provide a staffroom to do so.
    We have staff all over TES who talk about department rooms for coffee and a break in secondary and staffrooms in primary.

    In secondary schools are the dept rooms large enough for adults to maintain SD?
    In primary schools are the staffrooms?
    I'm expecting not in most cases.
    Therefore her assertion stands, staff are more likely to catch covid on their coffee break than in the classroom.

    Schools also have a great many measures in place all over the school, but generally less in the staffrooms, merely trusting staff to maintain distance, and respect bubbles.
    TheHeadteachersOffice likes this.
  4. Catgirl1964

    Catgirl1964 Senior commenter

    Our secondary staff room is large enough for social distancing but only because it is mainly used by TAs as other depts have their own bases with sinks, kettles, microwaves and fridges. The staffroom kitchen area is small though so we will need to rotate having formed an orderly, socially distanced queue. This is where the problems will happen.
  5. ukpaul

    ukpaul Occasional commenter

    Smiler31 and gill11 like this.
  6. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    No doubt helpful Headteachers and SLT will stop staff having coffee breaks. Lovely..

    So the undercurrent will become, it's all your fault if you're infected at School. Imagine future headlines in papers like the daily mail. Perhaps, Slacker Teachers having coffee breaks put the Schools at risk, would be a good one?
  7. botanybod

    botanybod New commenter

    This isn't at all surprising, surely? I'm in a office with two other people, where it will be just about possible to social distance. I'll need to have my breaks in there, and I'll bring a flask of coffee and a packed lunch. Our department usually have our breaks in a different office, which has a sink and kettle. If course we won't be able to use that anymore, that's just common sense, it's way too small. To expect normality to return at the moment is unreasonable. It will be a real shame, I will miss the interaction with other staff, but it's to be expected. If SLT haven't made provision for staff to socially distance on their breaks, they really should.
    gill11 and Catgirl1964 like this.
  8. Lalad

    Lalad Star commenter

    If 17 members of staff in one school in Dundee have contracted Covid19 (as reported on Radio 4 a few minutes ago) it suggests they must have caught it somewhere on site; but even if they caught it from each other, the likelihood must be very strong that the children in the school are also spreading the virus.
  9. hhhh

    hhhh Star commenter

    Why, do you think you're more at risk from all the teenagers crowded into your classroom? Next you're going to say that you think your colleagues are less likely to spit on you, cough on you, or are less likely to observe hygiene guidance than most teenagers. Or are you suggesting teenagers are more likely to come from households where they have house parties/generally go anywhere and mix with anyone?

    Nah, it's only coffee breaks that matter, clearly.
  10. Jeremyinspain

    Jeremyinspain Occasional commenter

    "...Every time a parent sends a child off to school, pre Covid, they may have been involved in a road traffic accident. And in fact that risk – or the risk from seasonal flu – we think is probably higher than the current risk of Covid..." Jenny Harries quoted in the Independent..

    So... '...we think... probably...' No statistics to go with that? Just a hunch? Is this what is now passing for 'following the science...?'
  11. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    17 members of staff
    2 children
    Doesn't quite suggest the children are positive and spreading the virus.

    This is a special school with children who have some quite significant needs. So staff will work in very proximity to each other by the nature of their work. No idea what PPE they were using.
  12. ChrisH77

    ChrisH77 New commenter

    From ONS statistics: on any day/week/month of April at the peak of the virus, in any age group 25 to 100, fewer death certificates recorded Covid-19 than other usual causes such as old age, illness or accident. Young people were 10x more likely to die from something else. Over that peak, school staff were less than half as likely to die from Covid-19 as professionals generally, and 4 to 5 times as likely to die of something else. Current incidence of infections/hospital cases/deaths is currently 100x less than the peak, so the risk, for the few months at least, is proportionately less.

    So Jenny Harries has reasonable grounds for thinking that way, and it's not her fault that others disagree.

    Is the TES Community stoking itself in an unwarranted panic over all of this, and only a week or so to regain a sense of proportion and duty? Are we a baying mob in search of the next lynching victim, or professionals with a job to do?
    TheHeadteachersOffice likes this.
  13. nervousned

    nervousned Senior commenter

    You mean when schools had hardly any kids in?
  14. ukpaul

    ukpaul Occasional commenter

    This PR push appears to be stretching into online forums as well.
  15. Camokidmommy

    Camokidmommy Established commenter

    In the past there have been threads on here mentioning how staff are being discouraged from using staff rooms, or staff rooms have been completely removed. (Don’t ask where but I’m sure there are)

    How sad to think that in the schools led by tyrannical SLT they could use this as a means to give reasons for not using staff rooms. I truly feel for those staff in situations where this will occur. Because it will, I’m sure.

    Smiler31 and agathamorse like this.
  16. hhhh

    hhhh Star commenter

    I didn't know of any mum dying from being spat at (just once) before Covid. And I've never had a colleague or student who has died from a road accident, or from flu-lots of people have been seriously injured by Covid, including young people, who were very fit before they caught it.
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2020
    Smiler31 likes this.
  17. hhhh

    hhhh Star commenter

    We don't want our colleagues, students or their families to be the next person dead. As far as I know, no person on here has supported or suggested the 'lynching' of anyone. However, I'd be very sorry to hear of any more teachers getting ill, or dying as this mum did https://www.itv.com/news/london/202...worker-dies-with-covid-19-after-being-spat-at
    Fact- a lot of teachers are said to be infected with it, very shortly after schools opened in Scotland.
    Fact-rates of infection are lower in many areas, but that's following a strict lockdown, in which schools/childcare settings had relatively few students in.
    Fact-you can get fined for not wearing a mask on a bus, some people were confined to their homes until 1st August, and gyms/shops etc are only allowed a fraction of the people in compared to before. It makes no sense to have these restrictions if schools are safe.
    Smiler31 likes this.
  18. Lalad

    Lalad Star commenter

    If you read the latest update on Dundee City Council's website, staff are able to be tested, but the advice to parents is that the children should self-isolate for 14 days and should only be tested if they display symptoms.

    It's therefore quite possible that asymptomatic children, who are statistically less likely to become ill with the virus, so have not been tested, have been spreading it to adults in the classroom: staff in this type of school will work in close proximity not only to each other, but also to the children...
  19. shevington2

    shevington2 New commenter

    No staffrooms ,another good reason for going out school at lunch hours. Did NHS staff meet on their breaks ?
  20. OG19

    OG19 New commenter

    Just go to the pub. It sounds like they're safer than the staffroom.

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