1. GA-English
  2. News

Face mask duty and distance rules: Bonn's cultural institutions already in the starting blocks

Face mask duty and distance rules : Bonn's cultural institutions already in the starting blocks

Bonn's cultural institutions are in the starting blocks. The state of North Rhine-Westphalia has already allowed the opening of adult education centres, museums and music schools as of this Monday, but the concepts for distance and hygiene rules have not yet been worked out.

Those who thought they would be allowed to go to the museum again in Bonn or to attend their course at the Volkshochschule must be patient. Although NRW has permitted the opening of adult education centres, museums and music schools from this Monday, the cultural institutions in the city are not yet ready to receive visitors again under the strict Corona conditions.

"On Monday, the city's crisis management team also dealt with the further opening possibility decreed by the state government by legal decree. As far as the cultural facilities are concerned, concepts are currently being worked out to ensure that the rules of distance and hygiene are observed when they are opened," explained city spokeswoman Monika Hörig on Monday. Therefore, it is not yet certain when exactly the Bonn City Library, the City Archive and the City Museums will open. "In the next few days we will gradually announce when the premises will open again", said Hörig.

Stephan Berg, director of the municipal art museum, has 12 May in mind, when his and possibly also other municipal museums and the Bundeskunsthalle could reopen. By then, all preparations should be completed, including sufficient masks for the staff and disinfectants for the visitors. Visitors should also be required to wear masks. "We have discussed a catalogue of measures with the other museums in Bonn", he reported. Berg pointed out that the museums are already practiced in matters of distance and attentiveness to regulations and is happy if the museums can open their doors again soon.

The music school will continue to teach only online for the time being. This also applies to the adult education centre, said Hörig. Background: The VHS Bonn is not only housed in the Haus der Bildung at Mülheimer Platz and in its own rooms in Bad Godesberg and Duisdorf, but also uses many other teaching facilities in the city. Hygiene concepts must be drawn up for all teaching facilities. That takes time. "As a result, we no longer need to register for short-time work for the employees in these cultural institutions," said Lord Mayor Ashok Sridharan.

It is also questionable whether the playgrounds in Bonn can be re-entered as early as Thursday, as permitted by the state. "The regulation came at short notice over the weekend, so I ask for your understanding that not all preparations have already been made or completed," said the Mayor.

Citizens should not get their hopes up for a quick opening of regular operations in the city's service centre. There, as before, it is only possible to make an appointment by telephone for urgent matters. The online appointment system is not expected to be activated again until the end of May. "But this is a dynamic process", said Hörig. Meanwhile: "When making appointments by telephone, we are taking the urgency a little further than before.

Unlike the municipal music school, some private music schools have been open again since Monday. Like Mario's music school, which teaches around 1,300 students - 60 percent of them children and young people - at five locations in Bonn, Meckenheim and Wachtberg. Operator Mario Müller is the chairman of the Federal Association of Independent Music Schools and understands that not all music schools can open. "This requires appropriate technical possibilities," he says.

At his music school, all 40 teachers have had an iPad provided by the company for a long time now, which has enabled them to give online lessons without much effort since the beginning of the Corona crisis. 95 percent of the students continued to be taught seamlessly in this way. This week, his school is running a mix of 50 percent on-site teaching and 50 percent online teaching. Two weeks ago, he also presented his hygiene concept to the city of Bonn and the two local authorities in the district - without any complaints. Müller and his colleagues are currently only allowed to teach one pupil at a time. The teaching in the day-care centres and schools is still on hold. "This is a bitter blow for us, after all we have 23 cooperation agreements with schools and daycare centers."

(Original text: Lisa Inhoffen / Translation: Mareike Graepel)