The Confederation strongly recommends that all students be tested regularly from the start of the school year, to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in schools.
Unvaccinated children and adolescents could be a viral reservoir likely to fuel new contaminations and outbreaks, warned the Federal Office of Public Health (OFSP). The latter notably bases his reflection on British data, a country where the Delta variant of the coronavirus has circulated a lot among the youngest.
But the cantons reject the federal injunction. The cantonal ministers in charge of public education wrote a letter expressing their dissatisfaction. They note in particular that everything relating to schools is the sole responsibility of the cantons. It is therefore up to them to define the prevention and testing strategy in schools.
>> Marc Menichini’s details in Forum:
Asked in the Forum program, the Vaud state councilor in charge of public education, Cesla Amarelle, stressed that the Confederation had presented its new recommendations on massive tests as being in consultation with the cantons, which did not is not the case. “But what is more worrying”, she underlined, “is the fact that at the same time there was a communication from the FOPH to the cantons which decreed that only mass tests made it possible to prevent clusters, disqualifying the approach of most cantons: targeted qualitative tests “.
Also vice-president of the Conference of cantonal directors in charge of public education (CDIP), Cesla Amarelle is in any case not in favor of such systematic substantive tests in the immediate future.
“The majority of the cantons consider that massive tests are disproportionate and that we can have the same objectives of protecting young people and school life with targeted tests based on convincing evidence,” she noted.
Cesla Amarelle does not rule out compulsory vaccination for teachers. “This is a question that will return to the table of the Federal Council and the Councils of State,” she said.
>> Cesla Amarelle’s interview in Forum: