Sweden Is Closing High Schools For A Month After 209 Deaths In Two Days
Sweden is set to close its high schools from Monday, December 7, after the country recorded 209 coronavirus deaths in two days.
So far, the country has avoided imposing any of kind of lockdown throughout the pandemic. However, students will now be forced to take online classes instead of attending school in person.
During a press conference, Prime Minister Stefan Löfven announced the country would be closing its high schools in a bid to help curb the spread of the virus.
‘You are going to need to change the way you are getting educated. I fully understand that this isn’t easy, but in the current situation, it is necessary,’ he said, as per the MailOnline.
Despite still not imposing any major socialising restrictions, Löfven did suggest that students shouldn’t be spending time with one another while the schools are shut.
‘I trust that you are wise and understand that this is not an extended Christmas break. It’s not a go-ahead for parties with friends,’ he added.
The Scandinavian country, which has surpassed 7,000 COVID-19 deaths, is expected to reach its second peak sometime this month, its public health body has warned.
This week, Sweden has been recording an average of 60 COVID deaths per day, however the rate still remains below the country’s highest peak, when an average of 100 deaths per day was recorded in April.
Sweden’s approach to the pandemic has been very different to many other countries, opting to avoid lockdown in a bid to protect the economy. It has not imposed the wearing of masks, either, leaving PPE to healthcare professionals.
This liberal approach has, however, been criticised by many, who have accused the government of failing to protect the country’s most vulnerable and putting the economy above their needs.
The country has now started to take action, by banning the sale of alcohol after 10.00pm and banning any gatherings of more than eight people.
Sweden’s government is now said to be divided over whether a lockdown should or shouldn’t be imposed, in a bid to reduce the transmission of the virus.
‘There’s certainly a split, and I’m pretty sure that many in the government have rather lost faith in the Public Health Agency,’ Stockholm’s Södertorn University’s associate politics professor, Nicholas Aylott, told the Telegraph.
‘By some counts, we’ve now got exactly the same level of spread of the virus that we had in the spring, and that’s about as clear a refutation of Dr Anders Tegnell’s strategy as you could wish for.’
The schools are expected to remain shut for a month.
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