Will schools reopen after Easter? Authorities say it’s unlikely

Federal health undersecretary Hugo López Gatel arrived in Mérida yesterday but did not deliver the news parents and students had hoped for. Photo: Courtesy
Federal health undersecretary Hugo López Gatell arrived in Mérida yesterday but did not deliver the news parents and students had hoped for. Photo: Courtesy

Federal health undersecretary Hugo López-Gatell says that Yucatán is not yet ready for students returning to classrooms.

The government official said that although Yucatán’s government has done much to contain the pandemic, the current rate of infections is still too high. 

López Gatell will spend the next several days in Yucatán and Campeche supervising the national COVID-19 vaccination strategy. He will also meet with members of Mexico’s education council where he will participate in talks on the topic of school reopenings.

As pressure continues to mount, authorities in Yucatán are eager to reopen schools, but it seems unlikely that such a move will come before the state “turns green” on the country’s epidemiological traffic light. 

Several organizations — made up mostly of parents with children in private schools — have been vocal in their disapproval of the government’s decision to keep schools closed. 

Earlier: Teachers overcome obstacles to help students in need

Debates surrounding the issue of whether or not schools should reopen after Easter break have become a serious point of contention on social media. While some people consider it hypocritical to have reopened bars and restaurants but not schools, others are quick to call out what they see as the selfishness of those who want their children in class despite the consequences. 

“Of course people with money want their kids to go back to school right away. If they get sick they can afford private care and they will be fine. If I get sick it means I will likely die in a cramped room with dozens of other sick patients in a public hospital,” said Mérida resident Teresa Rendon Echeverria.

Campeche has managed to keep new COVID-19 infections low and maintain green status. But it is likely that it will be the first state in the country to fully return to in-classroom education. A decision is expected today. 

Carlos Rosado van der Gracht

Born in Mérida, Carlos Rosado van der Gracht is a Mexican/Canadian blogger, photographer and adventure expedition leader. He holds degrees in multimedia, philosophy and translation from universities in Mexico, Canada and Norway.