Covid: Some Dubai Schools Keep Gates Closed

Covid Some Dubai Schools Keep Gates Closed


Covid-19

This article is part of an editorial series on Covid-19

Some UAE schools are choosing to delay the start of in-school learning by “at least one week” in some cases, as a result of a high number of Covid-19 cases, and staff and parents reporting they cannot return because they have tested positive with the virus.

While regulators in Dubai, Sharjah and Ras Al Khaimah have announced schools will remain open for in-school learning, some schools in these emirates are choosing to delay the school start date.

Victory Heights Primary School, Kent College Dubai and DESSC have so far announced they will not be physically open on Monday, but instead move to online learning. DESSC says it plans to open both of its schools on Tuesday, while VHPS will review its situation at the end of the first week. WhichSchoolAdvisor.com has requested schools across the emirate contact us if they plan to delay in-school learning, and will update this story as we receive further information.

In a note to its parents, the principal of Kent College Dubai said:

“Over the past few days, we have received messages from a number of our staff and parents who are returning from travel and also those who have stayed in Dubai, to let us know that they have either tested positive with Covid-19, our are close contacts with someone who has tested positive. Due to the high number of cases, we are unable to cover all staff who are going to be absent. After careful review, we have reached the conclusion that for at least the first 5 days of this term, we will move to distance learning in all phases of the school. We will continue to review this situation.

“We realise this is not the way any of us would like to begin the new term, however with safety being a priority, we feel that families are better protected by closing the school not for 5 days, rather than open with reduced and compromised staffing. If we do not close now, we potentially may need to close for a longer period of time due to greater outbreaks in the coming weeks. We are also mindful that children under the age of 12 no longer need a negative PCR test to return to school, so containment of any positive cases is increasingly difficult.”

In Dubai the official, KHDA position is that “Regular face-to-face education in Dubai private schools will continue in the 2nd semester while collective classroom & extracurricular activities will be discontinued. Canteens will close for the first 2 weeks of the semester & gatherings & school trips will be suspended”.

There is a similar ruling in Sharjah and Was Al Khaimah, while Abu Dhabi will not return to in-school learning for two weeks.





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