Plans on class size and infrastructure to keep schools safe during pandemics

Published Date: 06 July 2021 09:00 PM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Zhulkarnain Abdul Rahim, Chua Chu Kang GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education whether the Ministry will consider any future changes to the average class size or infrastructure of primary and secondary schools to better equip our schools to face the threat of the current and future pandemics.

Response

1. As different diseases and viruses have different characteristics and transmission modes, we will need to tailor our response and implement the appropriate measures to keep our schools safe.

2. Class size or school infrastructure may not be the most critical factors to deal with future pandemics of an unknown nature. What has been key thus far in our fight against the current COVID-19 pandemic have been various other measures, such as maintaining good personal hygiene and good ventilation in schools, and putting in place Safe Management Measures (SMM), including daily temperature-taking and screening of students and staff for COVID-19 symptoms, regular cleaning of high-touch surfaces and disinfection of premises, wearing of masks, and cohortising students to minimise inter-mingling. Increasingly, with effective and safe vaccines developed for school children, vaccination would also play a critical role in keeping our schools safe.

3. MOE will continue to take in advice from medical professionals, adapt our pandemic strategies and introduce appropriate measures based on scientific evidence and data to enable effective teaching and learning to take place in a safe manner.

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