On-site learning to resume in November, subject to students being vaccinated

PHOTO: Pixabay/Jonny Belvedere

The Education Minister says schools can re-open for in-classroom learning from November 1, provided enough students are vaccinated. Addressing a press conference, Treenuch Thienthong confirmed the plan to re-open schools following consultation with health officials and the interior ministries. According to the minister, the re-opening hinges on the rollout of Pfizer vaccine doses, which will be offered to students between the ages of 12 and 17 from next month.

Treenuch says vaccination will be carried out only with parents’ permission, with students in the dark red provinces prioritised. According to a Bangkok Post report, there are 15,465 educational facilities in the dark red zones. Around 70% of teachers across the country have now been vaccinated and Treenuch says under the plan, all school employees will be inoculated.

“Vaccination will need to proceed quickly. The Public Health Ministry will map out a vaccination plan while the Education Ministry will pass information about the necessity and possible side-effects of inoculation to parents.”

The minister says she hopes the information provided to parents will be enough for them to sign consent forms, which need to be returned by the end of this month.

“We will be living with Covid-19 and it must be done in a way that does not cause further chaos to our students’ education.”

Meanwhile, according to the Bangkok Post, Amporn Pinasa from the Office of the Basic Education Commission says unvaccinated students can also attend on-site classes, but will need to undergo more thorough screening than those who are vaccinated.

In related news, the Department of Disease Control has confirmed that 2 million Pfizer doses are expected to arrive this month, followed by another 2 million doses every week during October. Department chief Opas Karnkawinpong says around 4.5 million students will receive their first dose next month.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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Maya Taylor

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