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Parents, teachers, students and school officials have welcomed the latest announcement from KHDA to reopen canteens at all educational institutions. Image Credit: Gulf News Archives

Dubai: Physical Education (PE) lessons, gatherings, trips and extra-curricular activities can resume while canteens and eating areas can reopen in all private schools, early childhood centres and universities in Dubai starting from Monday, January 31, the Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA) announced today.

KHDA tweeted: ‘Thanks to the support & cooperation of parents, educators & students, PE lessons, gatherings, trips and extra-curricular activities can resume from Jan 31. Canteens & eating areas can reopen. This applies to all private schools, early childhood centres & universities in Dubai.’

Back to school

Earlier this week, students in kindergarten-level (FS level in British curriculum), primary school (Grades 1 to 5, or Year 2 to 6), Grade 12 (Year 13) and students studying for international or board exams returned for in-person classes in calibrated manner, after a brief suspension in line with COVID-19 protocols across the UAE.

Distance learning was re-installed while local authorities in each emirate were given “flexibility of implementation” of the directive from National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA). It was also announced earlier that remote learning option was still available as the pandemic continued to be re-evaluated. Parents were also asked to present a green status on the AlHosn app and produce a negative PCR test result with 96-hour validity, in order to be allowed on school premises.

'Welcome announcement'

Meanwhile, parents, teachers, students and school officials took to Twitter to welcome the latest announcement from KHDA to resume physical education and all extra-curricular activities and reopen canteens at educational institutes.

Carmella Hunt tweeted: “Schools doing their utmost for young people, as always” while Reena Oates exclaimed: “Finally!!!!”

“Great news to start the weekend with,” noted Rachael Wilding. Nathan Sadler commented: “Thank you @KHDA ! Residential trips, assemblies in the auditorium, and SPORTS DAYS! We cannot wait at @GEMS_WSO , but of course we will follow the safety guidelines Thumbs up #CollabUAE.’