The Welfare Committee of the St Augustines College in Cape Coast has strongly petitioned the Central Regional Coordinating Council to reconsider using the college as an isolation and or quarantine centre for COVID 19 patients.
A petition signed by the committee chairman, Mr Hayford Mensah Tetteh said the school's community saw the decision as one that posed imminent danger to the host community and called on the council to reconsider the decision in the spirit of goodwill.
The committee in the petition observed that many of those staying on the school campus had bungalows close to the dormitories where such patients would be kept and this it said made them vulnerable to the disease.
"Moreover we still have a number of teaching and non-teaching staff who work on campus. The likely situation of contacts with a quarantined person or persons is a high probability, a situation which might heighten the risk of members of the host community contracting the virus," it stated.
Quarantine centre, our home
It said in the era of "stay home and social distancing”, the campus remained their only home, saying the use of the school as an isolation centre invariably forces every member of the host community to be in a state of quarantine.
It further noted that nothing had been done to safeguard the lives of members of the host community who could be predisposed to the virus.
It therefore appealed to the council to reconsider the use of the school as an isolation centre to avoid placing others at risk.
Meanwhile, a letter signed by the Director General of the Ghana Education Service, Prof Kwesi Opoku-Amankwa and copied to several ministries and related departments last week asked that requests to use the various Senior High schools and other educational facilities for activities related to the fight against the COVID 19 pandemic should be routed through the Director General of the GES.
"Management of GES has no objection to the use of school facilities for COVID-19 activities. Management however requests that all such requests should be routed through the Director General who will then liaise with the national COVID-19 coordinating team," the letter stated.
Ensure effective coordination
The directive, it said would ensure effective coordination and monitoring of the use of the facilities by the GES and the national COVID-19 coordinating team.
The letter further directed all regional and district directors of education to engage their respective health and security teams to ensure effective and proper health practices before, during and after the use of the school facilities.