BusinessDay

Back to school: Have you prepared your child for post COVID-19 reality?

Today, September 21, 2020, primary and secondary schools in Lagos reopen for in-person learning five months after the Federal Government shut down schools in a bid to disrupt the rapid spread of the Coronavirus outbreak in the country.

While parents are relieved about having their children back to school for comprehensive education, there is a silent apprehension about how their little loved-ones will fare in the face of a virus whose infection profile is still being studied across the world.

The apprehension is understood when one considers that Israel – once praised to be the model of COVID-19 management- last week ordered a second national lockdown following a second wave infection that saw 5,000 new cases per day across the country.

South Africa is the closest reference on how school reopening in a COVID-19 era can be very dicey. The South African Government, after careful review of its COVID-19 pandemic situation, ordered reopening of schools on June 8, 2020, for its Grade 7 and Grade 12 students. However, the government quickly beat a retreat a month later and ordered the closure of schools again due to a surge in coronavirus cases.

Read also: At last! Schools set to resume in Lagos as proprietors map out resumption plans

“We want schools to reopen. We want our kids back at school. Our teachers are ready, but of course, not at all costs. The schools don’t want to be the next place where the next wave of the virus starts,” Basil Manuel, president of the National Professional Teachers’ Organization of South Africa (NAPTOSA) told the media after the government announced plans to reopen the schools again.

So how do parents wade through these dangerous murky water at times like these?

Kit up your child with knowledge and material
According to the United States Centre for Disease Control (CDC), COVID-19 cases involving children (age 0-17 years) accounted for only 7.3% of its total confirmed cases. The US has the highest COVID-19 infections in the world.

However, the CDC stated that as of August 2020, this celebrated low-infection status has now gradually worsened. Children are increasingly becoming the conduit for the spread of the virus.

There is a need to protect your entire household proactively by ensuring your bound-for-school child is fully aware of the coronavirus, how its spreads, the symptoms, and the dangers. Teach them how to protect themselves through comprehensive hygienic practices, regular use of facemask and the sanitisers. Ensure that the child has enough of these materials. It is wise to err on the side of ‘too-much’ with regards to having the necessary safety kits for your child.

Make him/her the poster child of the COVID-19 fight
Build the confidence of your child to be the school reference on how to protect oneself against the virus. Teach your child to refuse a handshake with anyone politely. Let them understand that this is the easiest way to spread the virus from person-to-person. Teach them never to have a conversation with anyone not wearing a mask. Teach them to use the hand sanitisers regularly.

Prepare them to understand that they may be mocked for taking these stringent safety steps. Tell them it is a profile they can embrace with pride as they are actions of the smart thinkers.

Be prepared for an unforeseen outcome
COVID-19 is unpredictable. These preparations may not entirely provide all the needed protection, as your child is human, who is susceptible to make a regrettable mistake.

Be prepared to deal with any outcome – such as isolation in an unfortunate event of infection in their class or treatment steps should the child become infected. This virus has a very low death rate, and as such, you should never panic if the child comes down with an infection.

This era requires a robust preparedness for the unforeseen, especially with the economic and health realities of this pandemic. Do you have an education or life insurance that assures that your child gets the desired educational attainment, no matter the situation that life serves you? Having a smart financial protection plan for your children is as critical as having a health and safety response and recovery plan for your entire family. Do not be caught unawares as the smartest people on earth are always in the position to bequeath quality education for their children, even when life happens to them.

This is where the Leadway Assurance’s fifty-year experience and industry-leading financial strength are available for your leverage as having a plan for the future requires trust, capacity and know-how.

You can call Leadway Assurance professional advisors for further information its virtual communication channels – 08134892145, Social Media handles @LeadwayAssurance on Facebook & Instagram and @Leadwayinsure on Twitter or send an email to Lcs@leadway.com. You can also request a call back from an experienced insurance advisor by visiting www.leadway.com/call-me

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