Dubai: With the UAE’s authorities announcing updated precautionary measures to curb the spread of COVID-19, school reopening procedures have also been updated, following an announcement made by the National Emergency Crisis and Disasters Management Authority (NCEMA). Here is all you need to know about the announcement made by NCEMA, as well as the local educational authorities in each emirate.
NCEMA and Ministry of Education
On December 28, NCEMA announced that the UAE decided to shift education to a remote learning system in the first two weeks of the second term, starting from January 3, 2022.
The resolution includes schools, universities and training centres around the country.
Specialist vocational training centres, laboratories, and clinical research centres in universities and training centres have been asked to adopt hybrid learning systems.
All students are required to provide negative PCR tests results taken within 96 hours upon the resumption of education.
The Green Pass system shall be applicable on students’ parents upon entry of educational facilities.
In a tweet on December 28, the UAE’s Ministry of Education reiterated that these protocols would be in place, adding: “We make it clear that these standards are subject to being updated and changed based on the latest requirements of health authorities and in coordination with committees and local emergency, crisis and disaster teams in each emirate. School administrations will communicate directly with parents and inform them of all developments about the school system and health status.”
On December 28, Abu Dhabi Emergency, Crisis and Disasters Committee also announced that the Emirate has approved remote learning for first two weeks of new school term, to ensure a safe return to schooling as a precautionary measure.
During these two weeks, ongoing testing campaigns will increase for education sector personnel and the situation will continue to be monitored to update protocols for the return to in-school learning.
The decision is applicable to all public and private schools in the emirate, including training institutes, colleges and universities to further protect schooling community, as part of precautionary measures taken to limit the spread of the virus and maintain low infection rates.
The committee also urged parents, guardians and academic and administrative staff to receive a booster dose and continue observing all precautionary measures, by wearing masks, practising physical distancing, and regularly washing and sanitising hands.
Dubai’s Knowledge and Human Development Authority announced that regular face-to-face education in Dubai private schools will continue in the second semester, while collective classroom and extracurricular activities will be discontinued. Canteens will close for the first two weeks of the semester and gatherings and school trips will be suspended.
On December 29, Sharjah Private Education Authority (SPEA), in coordination with the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority in the Emirate of Sharjah, announced that all students in Sharjah private schools, nurseries, educational centers and private institutes will return to face-to-face learning for the beginning of the next term, on Monday, January 3, 2022.
“Furthermore, all classroom and extracurricular activities, including morning assembly and school trips are suspended until further notice,” the authority added.
All school staff and students from age 12 years and above are required to present a negative PCR test result, taken within 96 hours to enter the school premises after the end of winter break, urging all school staff to take the booster shot of the COVID-19 vaccine.
Ras Al Khaimah
Ras Al Khaimah's Local Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority announced on December 29 that all private schools and nurseries will continue with regular learning inside the classrooms on campuses from January 3, 2022.
In an Instagram post by Ras Al Khaimah Police, it was announced that "learning will be in person for all students in private educational institutions and nurseries in the emirate, starting from the second semester".