As schools prepare to reopen, Thai officials discuss Covid-19 regulations

Flickr/ Melani McAlister

Thai health and education officials held a meeting yesterday to plan Covid-19 regulations, as the new school semester is right around the corner. Schools are expected to reopen on May 17. Officials from the Ministry of Public Health and Ministry of Education discussed how day schools and boarding schools alike will prevent and minimise any rebound of Covid-19.

Both types of schools must obey measures from the Provincial Health Public Office, and the Provincial Education Department. The first step will be to accelerate vaccinations to as many students as possible. The second step will be for schools to be assessed under the “Thai Stop COVID Plus” strategy. Schools must reach the goal of 95% vaccination.

For step 3, boarding schools must prepare a response plan if officials find any Covid-19 infections, or a high risk exposure in the school’s area. Day schools must prepare response plans as well. At day schools however, if infections are found, the school can sanitise the classroom where the infection is found, before resuming classes as normally, according to the Ministry of Public Health’s guidelines. Schools and classes at both types of schools will NOT immediately shut down if there are infections.

In step 4, for both types of schools, the Provincial Public Health Office must follow the measures and assign the provincial health centres to supervise residents in their areas.

Thailand’s Deputy Minister of Public Health told the Associated Press that if school isolation is required if an infected person is found in a boarding school. The deputy minister added that schools must also prepare to reopen schools according to ‘6-6-7’ measures. These measures include well-practiced precautions such as social distancing, wearing face masks, washing hands and temperature checks. The next 6 measures include school check-in and check-out, surveys and examinations and self-quarantine.

The next 7 measures include strict practices such as doing activities in small groups, and preparing ‘sealed routes’ for students travelling to school. Schools must also constantly report to the Ministry of Education’s ‘MOE COVID’ app.

SOURCE: Associated Press

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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