A good 30,000 students in North Rhine-Westphalia have been quarantined according to current reports. As the Ministry of Education announced on Monday, 30,018 students were in quarantine as of August 26th - 1.6 percent of the student body. Corona infection was confirmed in around 0.35 percent of all students - 6561 people. The highest number of students affected by quarantine was reached in November 2020 with 73,836 children and adolescents. According to the latest information, quarantine had been ordered for 0.2 percent (286 workers) of the teaching staff. And infection was confirmed in 0.08 percent of teachers.

The Ministry of Education pointed out that the data from all schools, pupils and teachers were not recorded: According to the weekly survey of the Ministry, almost 4000 of the total of 4844 public schools surveyed - with almost 1.85 million pupils and around 140,500 teachers.

This corresponds to a response rate of 82.3 percent of the schools.

The confirmed corona cases also include extracurricular tests - for example for people returning from school.

Who should be in quarantine?

Spahn against a patchwork quilt

Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn (CDU) pleads for more uniformity in schools in view of the different quarantine regulations of the states after corona cases.

"It is important to me that the rules are understandable and ideally uniform," said Spahn of the newspaper Welt.

"Do I only send the children into quarantine who were sitting next to the infected child?

The whole class?

Only the infected? "

"The countries all give different answers to these questions - and that is difficult to understand for both parents and children," said the Minister of Health.

He will discuss this with the countries.

Spahn also called for more money for the schools: "Now it is important that financial resources are made available for a kind of catch-up program, for example to finance additional school social workers and teachers."

The North Rhine-Westphalian state parliament will hold a special session on Thursday to discuss the protection of children and adolescents in the corona pandemic.

The SPD parliamentary group had requested the special meeting on Monday in Düsseldorf.

She feared a "loss of control" in view of the increasing number of corona infections in children.

The parliamentary group leader Thomas Kutschaty justified the move on Monday in Düsseldorf, saying that one “no longer wants to watch the state government shrugging at these dramatic numbers among the children”.

One wants to discuss with Prime Minister Armin Laschet (CDU) "what he intends to do to protect children in our country."

So far, students who have had contact with an infected person have been quarantined for 14 days. According to the relevant decree of the Ministry of Health, “close contact persons” are pupils who have sat in front of, behind, to the right or left of the infected person. The same applies to teachers and other school staff if they have had close contact with the student concerned. Vaccinated people without symptoms are exempt from quarantine. Anyone who submits a negative PCR test is allowed to attend classes again - unless they have "been identified as a contact person after a case-by-case examination by the health department," said a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health.