The return of students to schools will be done with three self tests for the first week, for all children, vaccinated and unvaccinated

After the festive period during which Omicron swept Greece, schools are opening today with changes in health protocols in order to limit the spread of the virus in the school community.

The return of students to classrooms will be done with three self tests for the first week, for all children, vaccinated and unvaccinated, while the entry of students to schools will be allowed only with a negative test after first registering on the official edu-pass platform.

After the mess that was created on Friday but mainly on Saturday with the shortages in self test, the government pledged to provide self test to all school units of the country and to serve those students who failed to get them from pharmacies.

For this reason, the schools will be open from 7 in the morning to those who have not taken a self test.

How will the tests be picked up from schools

In particular, the school units will open at 07:00, for the last students to receive a self test. Speaking to MEGA channel, the general secretary of the Ministry of Education, Alexandros Koptsis said: “In these extraordinary circumstances of course it will be done (the self test) by the parents, it is not the teacher’s responsibility to do it, there is the management and the time of one, one and a half hours for this management to be done by parents, as you understand,” stressed Mr. Koptsis.

According to the instructions of the Ministry of Education, those schools that do not have self tesst, should notify the School Committees in order to be supplied

According to the information, one million tests have already reached the schools, at a time when 12% of students and teachers, ie 200,000, do not seem to have taken their tests.

“The Ministry of Education should suspend the operation of the schools for one day, so that there is a supply and not to do this thing tomorrow, which will bring together students who have done the process and others not, as well as teachers,” said teacher federation OLME president, Theodoros Tsouchlos.

In any case, the return of students to school causes a “headache” to a portion of the specialists as there are fears that there will be a significant increase in cases in the coming days, while it is possible that many classes will close due to Omicron contagion.

Premiere with… absences

It is noted, however, that more than 11,000 children and adolescents will not go to school today, as they were positive for the coronavirus during the weekend.

At the same time, the race is underway to have self-tests available in all schools, so that families, which have not been able to find them elsewhere, can get them, something for which there have been reactions.

Changes in protocols

As mentioned above, the return of students will be done with three self tests for the first week, for all students, while all protection measures remain in force and 50% + 1 for the suspension of a class in case of contagion.

The three most important changes in schools under the shadow of the “Omicron” threat are:

  • An additional self-test is provided for the first week of school operation, ie three free self-tests will be conducted next week instead of two.
  • The free two-week self-tests will now be performed by both vaccinated students and vaccinated teachers, again twice a week for up to 24 hours before school on Tuesdays and Fridays.
  • In the event of an incident in the classroom, the whole department will be screened, and not just the students sitting close to the case, as has been the case so far. All unvaccinated students will have a free test every day for 5 days. Specifically, they will do two rapid and one self test in five days, in addition to the two constant self tests per week, so 5 tests in 5 days. Vaccinated students will do a total of 3 free self tests on those days.

Open to changes in health protocols

“If it is observed that we need to make some overall adjustments to the protocol during school, we will be vigilant, our reflexes are present,” said government spokesman Giannis Oikonomou.

“All it [the government] decided was to offer just one more self test instead of the free molecular test. And because it is, as usual, completely “prepared” and incompetent, even for the least, it did not even take care to ensure the adequacy of these tests”, main opposition SYRIZA stated in a statement.

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