Sharjah Private Education Authority
The Sharjah Private Education Authority has issued a new circular about the return to school after summer break Image Credit: Supplied

Sharjah: The Sharjah Private Education Authority (SPEA) has issued a circular to the principals of private schools in the emirate of Sharjah regarding the procedures for returning to schools for the upcoming academic year 2021-22 that starts on August 30.

PCR test mandatory

The circular said that for the safety of students and employees in educational institutions, it was decided that the procedures for returning to schools includes the requirement to submit a negative PCR test for COVID-19 from all employees in educational institutions and students aged 12 and above, before they join school physically at the beginning of the term.

Guidance on vaccinated staff

SPEA also stipulated that employees in educational institutions be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 (at least two doses) to enter the educational institution, except for those who are in the excluded categories for vaccination, as attested by an approved medical report. Those exempted from vaccination are however required to take a PCR test on a weekly basis.

New staff coming from abroad

Regarding newly-recruited teachers and staff who are coming from outside the UAE and are not fully vaccinated, they are also exempted from the vaccination requirement temporarily. They are allowed to enter educational institutions for two months, within which time they should obtain the vaccination. Until then, they have to take a PCR test every week.

Temporary exemption

The circular clarified that it is not required for students to be vaccinated to enter educational institutions at the present time – it is sufficient to show a negative PCR test result at the beginning of the school year. SPEA called on parents to encourage their children to obtain the vaccination in support of the UAE’s efforts to control the pandemic and reach heard immunity.

Earlier it was announced that students aged 16 and above must be fully vaccinated to enter schools after the summer break.