The courses in schools and high schools will be taken with physical presence or will go online according to a new scenario, according to a decision adopted on Thursday evening by the National Committee for Emergency Situations.
The decision allowed the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Education to issue a joint order linking the online school to the number of free COVID beds in each county.
At the same time, the new rules will require the suspension of courses with physical attendance if 3 COVID cases have been confirmed in class, compared to only one COVID case as they were at present.
The National Committee for Emergency Situations said that courses can be conducted with physical presence in the counties where the occupancy rate at the county level of hospital beds intended for the COVID-19 patients is at most 75%. At the same time, classes will be suspended for 10 days and pupils will go online if in there are 3 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the class. This is valid for all educational units: kindergartens, primary, elementary, high school or vocational schools.
Until now, the joint order of the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health stipulated that students and kindergarten children in localities where the COVID-19 infection rate exceeds 3 per thousand will go to physical school or take online classes depending on the percentage of teachers who are vaccinated in that school. Specifically, where the percentage of teachers who were vaccinated was over 60%, children could continue to attend school in physical format. Where the vaccination rate among teachers was below 60%, and the incidence of COVID-19 cases in the locality was over 3 per thousand, students went online.
At the same time, the order established that the automatic suspension of physical courses is triggered for 14 days if only one COVID-19 case is detected in a class.
Education minister Sorin Cîmpeanu stated on Friday that, after amending the operating strategy of schools, all schools and kindergartens in the country will conduct classes with physical presence as of Monday, January 17.
“We disconnected both from the incidence of infections and from the vaccination rate of education staff. The vaccination rate parameter of the educational staff, introduced on November 15, 2021, I consider that it was a strong motivation for the current educational staff to be the most numerous vaccinated socio-professional category, well over 70 %”, said the minister.