Coronavirus: Sharjah schools reopen with 25% capacity

All student aged 12 and above were screened before opening

A teacher checks temperature of students at school. Image used for illustrative purpose.

A teacher checks temperature of students at school. Image used for illustrative purpose.

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UAE - More than 20,000 students of Sharjah private schools returned to school on Sunday after the strict implementation of Covid-19 precautionary measures.

"The first day of the school was smooth and all school management had shown great compliance to the guidelines issued by the Sharjah Private Education Authority (SPEA) in coordination with the Sharjah Emergency, Crisis and Disaster Management Committee.

The SPEA will continue its visits to ensure safe gradual back to schools which will start with 25 per cent capacity, then 50 and 75, until they will operate by 100 per cent for this term," said a top SPEA official.

All student aged 12 and above were screened before opening, he added.

"School administrations are bound by the guideline booklet distributed by the SPEA. It defines the requirements regarding the study of the (hybrid) system. It also includes all procedures and precautionary measures for the smooth functioning of the schools, including their transport systems," said the official.

The SPEA had recently issued circulars to schools to repeat the Covid-19 screenings for students who had previously been examined, but the reopening was postponed. "In schools where the number of students is less than 100, school nurses were trained to conduct Covid-19 screenings. Schools with more than 100 students were redirected to Scovid-19 screening centres across the emirate," he said.

Speaking to Khaleej Times, Sheikh Saeed bin Sultan Al Qassimi, owner of Al Marifa International School (MIS), said that he has been following up closely the school management to ensure their compliance with all regulations. "Health and safety teams are in place as per the SPEA instructions. We installed sterilisation gates at all school entrances and sanitising dispensers are present at each spot."

Samer Sarhan, director of MIS, added: "Schools have formed teams to supervise students with all aspects of classroom sterilisation. It has also allocated a dedicated medical team in case there is a suspected case of Covid-19. This is in addition to preparing school buses and sterilising them twice every day, and making necessary checks for all school employees."

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