September has arrived, and a new school year begins in the schools of the European Union, already the second in a pandemic. It will be different from the previous one, because humanity has learned to adapt to the conditions put forward by the coronavirus.
By the start of the new academic year 2021-2022, over 70% of the EU adult population has already been vaccinated. Vaccinations are also allowed for the 12+ age group, however, only with two types of vaccines. And everything would be fine, but the more infectious and rapidly spreading Delta strain is of particular concern. The possibility of the appearance new, even more aggressive options. Therefore, the opening of schools is accompanied by following the specific recommendations of specialists.
Susan Flocken, Director of the European Union of Educators, talks about the changing health and epidemiological situation:
“We are updating specific guidelines for health and safety in schools. It is important to communicate them clearly and in a timely manner to the teaching staff, parents and children. Our experience shows that such measures cannot be announced late. It happened that on Friday or Sunday evening a decision was made, which must be carried out from Monday. “
The European Union does not consider compulsory vaccination of teachers mandatory:
“Vaccinations should always be voluntary. We must not impose it. It is important to invite educators to vaccinate. This was not possible at the beginning of the crisis. Back then, people in schools did not have any anti-virus protection. We strongly demanded that teachers be included in the priority group, because they are a folk profession. “
Vaccination of children continues. But, according to the European trade union, only 12.1% of children under 18 are vaccinated with at least one dose. At the same time, the indicators vary greatly in different countries. For example, in Belgium, 23.6% of adolescents are vaccinated, having received at least the first dose, and in Bulgaria – no more than 0.5%.
The European Medicines Agency approved the vaccination of children in early summer, allowing Pfizer / BioNTech and Moderna vaccines for vaccinations over 12 years of age, taking into account WHO recommendations… Soon adolescents were vaccinated in the EU countries. Early july Greece, following similar actions by the United States and some European countries, approved and began vaccinating adolescents between 15 and 17 years old with Pfizer. In this case, vaccinations are optional…
School administrations have made good use of the vacation time – classrooms have been disinfected, ventilation has been checked and improved, and transparent partitions have been installed. That is, schools are ready to accept children, but this year is unlikely to be easy:
“Students have to make up for lost time because they have not reached their normal performance levels. The school curriculum must be adapted to the current situation, teachers will have to take into account the lack of knowledge in certain subjects in their wards. “
And yet the second academic year after the start of the pandemic begins at a more optimistic level, with a desire to bring it as close as possible to the dock level. And how else. After all, one way or another, but the pandemic will have long-term consequences for the current generation of European youth.