-By Dr Lakshmi Leela
(Consultant Paediatrician, Rainbow Children’s Hospital, Hebbal)
With schools set to welcome primary students, the City’s top doctor has listed SoPs that need to be followed in school so that kids are safe on the campuses. Children have the right to education. In fact, students benefit from in person learning. Vaccination is the leading public health prevention strategy to end the COVID-19 pandemic. As school reopens everyone should play their role in keeping students safe and healthy. UNICEF and CDC have issued some of the guidance to help manage the risks posed during these tough times.
Engage the school community early and often:
Teachers and caregivers should remind students of hygiene and safety rules to provide information, education appropriate for their age and languages. Remind the community that they set an example for students. Provide a checklist of what to bring on their journey to the school such as cloth mask, hand sanitizer, and tissues. Hand sanitizing stations at the entry and exit levels.
Determine a queuing system for students on arrival and a process for staff to greet / escort students only as necessary (very young students, etc.) Add distancing markers to walkways to ‘nudge’ physical distancing, for example, with paint or chalk. Avoid general crowding and congestion during drop-off and pick-up, and limit contact between cohorts through staggered or alternating schedules.
Prioritise active, non-motorized transport to support physical distancing:
Promote walking and cycling to reduce crowding on school buses and public transport, and provide more space for those who must use these modes of transport. Treat school buses as extensions of the classroom.
1. Universal and correct use of masks
2. Physical distancing
3.Handwashing and respiratory etiquette
4.Cleaning and maintaining healthy facilities
5.Contact tracing in combination with isolation and quarantine Mask policies: