Around 70 percent of secondary school students have been vaccinated against Covid-19.
Students with a vaccination appointment that clashes with exam timings will be given a chance to appear in the second round of examinations, Adviser to the Minister of Education and Higher Education Mohamad Al Bashri announced on Qatar TV on Monday.
Qatar’s ministry of education has coordinated with the ministry of health to avoid overlapping vaccination appointments with school exams for students to ensure their safety is put as a priority, the official added.
However, “if the dates clash, the students will be given a chance to appear in the second round of examinations,” he said.
The comments were made shortly after the second-semester exams for secondary school certificates kicked off across schools in Qatar.
All exams are to be held in person with exemptions for those who are infected with Covid-19 and those who have come into contact with infected persons.
“Such students will show a medical certificate issued by MoPH to get a chance in the second round of examinations,” Al Bashri highlighted.
To quell concerns about students’ safety, the education official announced that around 70 percent of secondary school students have been vaccinated against Covid-19.
97% of teachers, workers and administrative staff at schools across Qatar have also been vaccinated to ensure the educational sector remains safely active during the pandemic.
In addition, Al Bashri confirmed all schools in the country are being thoroughly sanitised to accommodate students for exams, while health inspectors and teams from the health ministry conduct daily monitoring visits to ensure compliance with Covid-19 protocols.
Al-Bishri also highlighted efforts that have been made to improve remote learning, including the provision of equipment and infrastructure for schools across Qatar, making remote learning more interactive for students and teachers alike.
School bus drivers are also being quarantined from other drivers and their temperature is checked every day before the start of shift. The same applies to bus attendants, and buses are sanitised daily.
In February, Qatar expanded its inoculation drive by turning the Qatar National Convention Centre into a vaccination clinic in cooperation with the Ministry of Public Health (MoPH). Since then, at least two drive-thru vaccination centres were also opened to speed up the process.
The first priority group for the QNCC comprised of educators and staff at both private and government institutions, given their essential work during the ongoing pandemic.
Al-Bishri’s comments on Monday come just days ahead of the first phase of Covid-19 restriction lifting on May 28, when blended learning is expected to resume at 30% capacity.
Qatar has seen a steady drop in Covid-19 daily cases since restrictions were imposed in early April.
On Monday, health authorities recorded 299 new Covid-19 cases with 354 new recoveries from the virus. So far, 547 have died of the novel coronavirus in Qatar.