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Taiwan allows conditional reopening of preschools

2021-07-25
Focus Taiwan
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Image from Unsplash for illustrative purposes
Image from Unsplash for illustrative purposes

Taipei, July 23 (CNA) Taiwan's preschools and day care centers will be allowed to reopen under certain conditions when the COVID-19 alert level is lowered on July 27, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) said Friday.

In a press briefing, the CECC said preschools and day care centers will be permitted to reopen on July 27 if more than 80 percent of their teachers and administrative personnel have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Employees who are not vaccinated will have to be tested for COVID-19 within three days of the school's opening, and continued testing will be required every three to seven days until they are vaccinated, the CECC said.

According to the CECC's protocols, a vaccinated person is one who has completed at least 14 days since the first jab.

Taiwan's preschools and day care centers have been closed since mid-May, when the government issued a Level 3 COVID-19 alert amid a spike in domestic cases.

On Friday, however, the Cabinet announced that the alert will be lowered to Level 2 on July 27, as the average daily number of new domestic COVID-19 cases has dropped over the past week.

Regarding buxibans (cram schools) and after-school child care centers, the same regulations will apply as for preschools, except that they will not be required to meet the 80 percent threshold for their employees, the CECC said.

However, none of those facilities will be permitted to resume service if they do not have windows that can be opened to allow proper ventilation, the CECC added.

Meanwhile, Peng Fu-yuan, director-general of the K-12 Education Administration, told reporters that the number of people allowed in a preschool room will be limited to one per 2.25 square meters of open space, which does not include areas occupied by furniture.

He said children with a fever or acute respiratory infection and those living with persons who are in home quarantine should not attend preschool.

Furthermore, parents and visitors should not enter the premises of a preschool, Peng said.

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