Schools may have to suspend in-class lessons and resume full-tie remote learning.
UAE schools may have to operate at reduced capacity for in-class learning or even close temporarily and resort to e-learning in the event of an increase in Covid-19 cases, according to the Ministry of Education (MoE).
Ahead of the start of the new school year on August 30, where some of the students will have in-class lessons, the ministry issued guidelines outlining contingency plans for schools in case Covid-19 cases in UAE increase, or if some students and staff are identified to have been infected with the virus.
In the guidelines, the MoE said schools will suspend in-class lessons and return to full-time remote learning if it is found that there is an extreme risk to safety of students and staff.
Through their website, the MoE emphasised the importance of immediately isolating the person suspected of being infected with Covid-19, especially when they show symptoms such as fever (37.5 degrees Celsius), cough, body pain or fatigue, shortness of breath, sore throat, diarrhea, nausea, headache, or loss of sense of smell or taste, while at the educational facility and the medical staff have confirmed these symptoms.
What to do if Covid-19 cases are identified at school campuses
– The guardian of the student suspected to be infected with the virus must be notified immediately to refer them to the hospital for treatment.
– The infected student will be prevented from entering the educational facility and the relevant authorities must be notified about the case through official channels.
– The student shall resort to remote learning until a negative Covid-19 result is obtained, and a medical report that he’s free from other diseases.
– Only medical staff will be allowed at the educational facility to enter the isolation room where an infected student or staff was found and after wearing full personal protective equipment.
– The classroom and all annexes of the facility that the suspected Covid-19 patient reached will be closed temporarily until all sterilisation procedures are completed.
– The educational facility will carry out a tracing process to identify all those who got into contact with the suspected patient, including teachers and friends of the infected student, or (anyone who spent more than 15 minutes with him or her at a distance of 1.5 meters, from the day the symptoms showed up.
– The school must inform the parents of all students who were in contact with the infected pupil, and provide them with information on home quarantine procedures and distance learning plans. Sterilisation measures must be taken according to the classroom and building guidelines.
– A stay-at-home policy must be applied to students, teachers and administrative staff, or educational facility employees, who suffer from symptoms of Covid-19.
– All safety instructions must be followed by the medical staff during a Covid-19 emergency at the educational facility and must adhere to wearing all medical protective equipment when accompanying the person suspected of contracting Covid-19.
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