WELLINGTON, Oct. 20 (Xinhua) -- Onsite learning at schools for senior secondary school students in COVID-19 Level 3 regions including Auckland will start from next week, New Zealand Education Minister said Wednesday.
Ahead of the exams by the end of the year, secondary schools in these regions will start onsite learning for year 11 to 13 on Tuesday, Chris Hipkins told a press conference.
"This is a complex issue requiring difficult trade-offs between improving education and increasing potential health risks for children and young people," Hipkins said.
Learners in this age group are able to be vaccinated and are required to wear masks, and staff and volunteers working on site will need a negative test before attending, the minister said, adding government agencies have also continued to refine public health measures for school and early learning services.
Children, young people and staff at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 should stay at home unless fully vaccinated, face coverings are mandatory for staff and learners from year 9 to 13, and records must be kept for contact tracing purposes, Hipkins said. Face coverings on school transport will also be mandatory.
The minister stressed that staff and volunteers in all regions need to receive their first vaccine by Nov. 15. Enditem