The Christmas break is set to be extended following a decision made by the Cabinet at a meeting today – it is being reported.
Taoiseach Micheal Martin is going to brief the nation on this decision and many others this evening, it is understood.
As it stands, schools are due to reopen on Wednesday January 6 but that is now to be extended until Monday January 11.
This comes as the Covid-19 situation in the country continues to deteriorate.
Last night, the General Secretary of the Irish National Teachers’ Association had called on the government to extend school closures into January due to the increase in Covid-19 cases.
John Boyle said: “Cases have grown at an alarming rate in the last fortnight with nearly 700 children of primary school age testing positive in the fourteen days prior to schools closing for the Christmas holidays.
“In our view your government would also be better placed late next week to take account of emerging scientific evidence regarding the new variants of Covid-19 than you possibly could be within the next seven days.”
In Laois, two schools, Holy Family Senior School and Portlaoise Educate Together NS, were forced to close early for Christmas due to Covid-19 outbreaks.
The government is likely to look at tightening restrictions on retail, gyms, leisure centres, and home visits.