HE the Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Khalid bin Khalifa bin Abdulaziz al-Thani on Thursday visited three schools to inspect the procedures and precautionary measures taken by the Ministry of Education and Higher Education (MoEH) and Ministry of Public Health (MoPH) to achieve maximum safety for students and the teaching and administrative staff in order to prevent the spread of Covid-19.
The three schools visited by HE the Prime Minister are Omar Bin Al Khattab Independent Preparatory School for Boys, Al Bayan Second Primary School for Girls, and Qatar Science and Technology Secondary School for Boys.
During the visit, he was briefed on the various educational arrangements and health preparations made for the new academic year (2020/2021) in light of the pandemic. The premier inspected a number of classrooms, laboratories, isolation rooms and halls.
HE the Prime Minister also attended a part of the lessons and discussed with students their study experience and distance learning. In this regard, he stressed the importance of preserving public health and educating young people about the need to adhere to the health measures taken, praising the efforts of the education sector to continue distance learning during the Covid-19 pandemic and to enhance the utilisation of technological achievements in this field.
HE the Prime Minister was accompanied during the visit by HE the Minister of Public Health Dr Hanan Mohamed al-Kuwari and a number of senior officials of the Ministry of Education and Higher Education.
Thousands of students returned to school for the new academic year on September 1 after a long break necessitated by the Covid-19 restrictions, even as many others stayed at home as part of the blended learning system put in place for this term.
According to the blended learning system, students have to attend classes in school from one to three times a week, with a maximum 30% of the total number of students allowed on a single school day. In order to maintain the necessary health conditions and social distancing, schools have been required to split students at any level into groups of a maximum of 15.
Also, a minimum distance of 1.5m has to be maintained between each student on all sides.
These and a host of other precautionary measures have been put in place to protect children from Covid-19 infection. These include checking the body temperature of students before letting them in, general social distancing on campus, wearing face masks, provision of hand sanitisers and other measures.
The MoEHE and MoPH have reiterated the need for students to follow all precautionary measures in schools and at homes, and stressed the important role played by all concerned in this – children, their parents and the school staff.
The MoEHE is implementing the blended learning system during the first term of the 2020/2021 school year in government and private schools, higher education institutes and kindergartens, across all educational stages.
More than 340,000 students are expected to attend public and private schools in this academic year.