As Singapore gradually reopens under phase 3 (heightened alert), in-person tuition and enrichment classes for students under 18-years-old will also resume. Safety measures at these schools and centres will also be strictly followed to reduce the risk of Covid-19 transmission.
The Multi-Ministry Task Force (MTF) announced the resumption of in-person tuition and enrichment classes on 18 June.
The Ministry of Education (MOE) also released a statement that the reopening and safety measures at these schools will take effect from Monday (21 June).
Safety Measures At Schools And Centres Under Phase 3 (Heightened Alert)
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Centres with on-premise instruction will be required to follow the nationwide safe management measures for workplaces. This will include:
- Health checks
- The use of SafeEntry for contact tracing all employees, students and visitors
- Wearing masks at all times
- Regular cleaning of common facilities and high-touch areas
All centres that will conduct on-premise instruction are expected to adhere to the following safety measures in classrooms and all other areas accessed by students whether indoors or outdoors:
1. Safe distancing
Centres must ensure safe distancing between students. This involves putting up the appropriate floor demarcations and/or physical barriers. There should also be a strict separation between students in different classrooms at all time. Intermingling is not allowed.
Safety measures for students at these schools and centres allowed to continue on-premise instruction should also include:
- Maintaining a safe distance of at least 1m between students at all no times.
- Ensuring no physical interaction between the students.
- If 1m safe distancing is not possible and some interaction is unavoidable, centres can organise students into groups of a maximum of five students. There should also be no physical interaction or intermingling between different groups. MOE also advises that there be 2m spacing between the groups.
Tutors & Instructors
- MOE advises tutors and instructors to minimise contact with their students.
- If there are instances where some interaction is unavoidable, the ministry says “contact with students should be transient.”
- Otherwise, tutors and instructors should remain at the front of the class as much as possible.
Other safety measures to take note
- There should be no single room within the centre that holds more than 50 persons.
- As per the Ministry of Manpower’s (MOM) guidelines for workplaces, there should be no cross-deployment across worksites. Additional safeguards must be taken if cross-deployment cannot be avoided.
2. Health declarations
- Students who are placed on Leave of Absence (LOA) or Approved Absence (AA) by their schools should not be permitted to enter the centre premises. The same goes for students and staff who are on a Stay Home Notice (SHN), or Home Quarantine Order (HQO).
- MOE highly advises that centres be aware of staff and students with fever or other respiratory symptoms including sneezing, breathlessness, runny nose, loss of smell, cough or sore throat.
- Staff and students who are feeling unwell and experience these symptoms should leave the centre and immediately seek a doctor. They should also not be allowed to attend lessons.
- It is also best to check if a family member living in the same household as a student of staff is also feeling unwell. MOE says, “If so, the child should not attend lessons in person.”
Image source: iStock
3. Disinfection of surfaces
- All surfaces in classrooms must be thoroughly disinfected even between classes.
- Sharing of equipment should be avoided as much as possible. If this cannot be done, the equipment should then be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected before being handled or used by others.
- Sharing of wind or brass instruments is still not allowed.
4. Class timings
- There should be an allocated 15 minutes between classes. MOE states, “This is to allow adequate time to disinfect classroom surfaces, and to ensure strict separation of individuals from different classes.”
- For more safety measures at these schools and centres, they should work out attendance and dismissal arrangement to help avoid congestion of persons in or outside the centre.
5. Indoor Live Performances
Tuition and enrichment centres can also resume indoor live performances including music concerts of drama performances with MOE’s approval.
To ensure the safety of performers, crews and audiences, centres should follow the safe management measures outlined in the National Arts Council’s Advisory.
Those who wish to host an indoor live performance can submit an application to [email protected] with the following details at least three weeks in advance of the proposed event date:
- Date of the event
- The event’s purpose
- Total number of performers and crew participating
- Total number of on-site audience
- Proposed safe management measures
Image source: iStock
Safety Measures For Private Tuition And Enrichment Classes In Private Residences
Home-based tuition and enrichment are also allowed to run in-person lessons. These classes will be subject to the prevailing national group size limit and the number of unique household visitors that are allowed per day.
MOE adds that home ventilation should be approved by opening doors and windows. Fans may also be used to promote air circulation when needed.
“Tuition and enrichment centres are responsible for ensuring that all safe management measures are implemented in their premises at all times,” says the ministry.
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