Abu Dhabi students to return to schools

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Abu Dhabi has approved in-school learning for the 2021-22 academic year.

The decision came following consultation and collaboration with parents, teachers, principals and school operators, conducted in May and June.

It also follows the vaccination of more than 80 per cent of teachers and school staff, including all maintenance and security teams.

The back-to-school strategy aligns with international best practices, and involves all key stakeholders including the school community, health authorities, Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge (ADEK) and other relevant government authorities.

Survey

As part of the consultation, ADEK conducted an independent survey on schools reopening for the next academic year.

More than 117,000 parents representing over 230,000 students across public, private and charter schools, and including both UAE nationals and expats, participated in the Parents Survey on Schools Reopening.

About 70 per cent of students are expected to return to in-school learning, with 88 per cent of parents saying it was more beneficial for their child’s education.

Vaccination

Parents also believe vaccination will further enhance their confidence about the safety of schools.

Currently, the Pfizer vaccine is available for children aged 12 and above.

A Sinopharm immune bridge study was recently launched in the UAE to examine the immune response to the vaccine in children aged 3 to 17, with the emirate planning to make the vaccine available to children in the near future.

The Abu Dhabi Emergency, Crisis and Disasters Committee stressed the importance of coordination between schools in the emirate and ADEK to ensure that they are ready to receive students of all levels at the start of the academic year.

ADEK will continue working with the schooling community and health authority and will update the protocols for reopening schools very soon.

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