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Rules set for schools as Omicron spreads

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A teacher lecturing in a classroom at a school in Phnom Penh’s Chroy Changvar district last year. Hong Menea

Rules set for schools as Omicron spreads

Amid a surge of Omicron cases in recent days, Minister of Education, Youth and Sport Hang Chuon Naron has instructed that educational institutions and schools located in high-risk areas prepare for teaching and learning in clusters, with timetables and shifts arranged accordingly for students.

Schools in high-risk areas are advised to prepare online classes for students who are unable to attend in-person.

Chuon Naron gave the instructions in a notice on February 10 regarding the implementation of standard operating procedure (SOP) on health and safety for education institutions. He urged vigilance and adherence to the SOP, among other health measures.

“[Each institution] has to monitor the health of students, teachers and staff before entry. Schools have to be cleaned and disinfected,” he said.

He added that large gatherings are not permitted while the number of students and teachers must be limited to a controllable level for any gathering.

“In case the virus spreads at an education institution, it must be temporarily closed and either transition online,” Chuon Naron said.

The minister said that relevant authorities and school management must ensure that places selling food and snacks on school compound and in its vicinity are not crowded with students. Instead, students are encouraged to bring food and drinking water from home.

Guests who come to visit a school or education institution are advised to remain outside of classroom, or maintain a safe physical distance otherwise. Schools are not permitted to organise a study trip in high-risk areas, he said.

The Ministry of Health on February 13 reported 401 new Covid-19 cases, four of which were imported and all were confirmed to be the Omicron variant.

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