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Unsustainable staffing pressure forces home-learning for some pupils

Ballakermeen headteacher regrets 'unsustainable' situation

Some students at Ballakermeen High School will be forced to work from home on Thursday and Friday due to high levels of staff absence.

The head teacher says there is ‘unsustainable pressure’ on the school – just two days into the new term.

In a letter to parents Adrienne Burnett says more than 25 teaching or support staff have been absent since the term began on Tuesday – half of the canteen staff are also unavailable for work. 

There is also a lack of supply teachers available to stand in which is ‘further limiting’ options.

Year 10 pupils will be asked to stay at home on Thursday and Year 9 on Friday – online learning will be available although staff will not be on hand to provide instructions.

In the letter the head teacher wrote: “Please be assured this decision has not been taken lightly and I thank you in advance for your understanding and support.

“We sincerely hope that we will be in a position to teach all students, face to face, in the very near future.”

Today Arbory, Castletown and Malew MHK Jason Moorhouse has called on Education Minister Julie Edge to adapt the current mask wearing policy which does not mandate the use of face coverings.

He says it could help avoid situations like the one being experienced at the Douglas high school:

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