“The conditions that are required for the opening of schools have not been created”, said the secretary general of Fenprof, Mário Nogueira.

For Mário Nogueira, “face-to-face education is essential” to restore some normality to schools, since “remote education, again, would be tragic” for students, teachers and auxiliary staff.

In view of the Covid-19 pandemic and the risk of people being infected by the new coronavirus, the beginning of school activities, which has been scheduled for between 14 and 17 September, should be accompanied by “strict measures that guarantee that the possibility of infection is reduced as much as possible”, he added.

“The Government have wasted two months, July and August, when they had the opportunity to improve” the sanitary measures, complying with the guidelines of the Directorate-General for Health (DGS), criticised the union leader.

Mário Nogueira again defended that the Ministry of Education should have carried out “Covid-19 screenings for the entire school community” before reopening the schools across Portugal.

He believes that screenings should take place “prior to the beginning of the academic activities” and that it would be up to the Government “to articulate with the municipalities on how to make this happen”, according to the “Plan for the safe opening of the 2020-2021 academic year in person”, proposed by the national secretariat of Fenprof, on 30 July.

“There have been no screenings, there are no social distancing measures in place and there is also a lack of personnel. The Ministry of Education has been sleeping for two months,” he concluded.