The National - News
Pupils at Al Ain school can go outside without masks after hitting 85% vaccination rate
Pupils at a school in Al Ain can go outside the building without masks after they became the first to hit a milestone 85 per cent vaccination mark under an Abu Dhabi coronavirus safety initiative.
Grace Valley Indian School can ease restrictions immediately after achieving the top tier status for inoculations in the Blue Schools initiative.
Vaccination rates among pupils in Abu Dhabi have increased significantly since the Abu Dhabi Department of Education and Knowledge introduced the policy this month.
About 107,000 pupils – 39 per cent of the school population in the capital – have been vaccinated.
As their inoculation rates increase under the initiative, private and charter schools can advance through four colourcoded tiers: Orange (less than 50 per cent of the school population vaccinated), Yellow (5064 per cent), Green (65-84 per cent), and Blue (85 per cent and higher).
Privileges come with each tier achieved. Physical distancing rules at Grace Valley can be lifted, while events including assemblies and graduation ceremonies can be held and activities with other Blue-tier schools, including sports tournaments and competitions, are permitted.
Parents who follow regulations can attend macro bubble events at the school and field trips will be reinstated.
“The efforts made by the Grace Valley Indian School community to return to normality stand as an exemplary role model to the Abu Dhabi education sector,” said Sara Musallam, chairwoman of Adek.
“I would like to personally thank all parents who chose to vaccinate their children.
“Your decision has helped to protect the health and safety of your child’s school community and contributed towards a return to pre-pandemic school operations.
“Since the Blue Schools initiative’s activation just two weeks ago, we have seen a prominent increase in student vaccination rates.
“School community stakeholders, including students, parents, principals and teachers have worked collectively to make this possible, and it is encouraging to see so many schools advance through the tiers due to an increase in student vaccination adoption.
“We look forward to celebrating more schools that advance to the Blue tier soon.”
A survey by Adek found that parents of 52,000 pupils across Abu Dhabi’s Private and Charter Schools were interested in vaccinating their children.
Seven schools have progressed from the Orange tier to Yellow tier, while one school has moved from Yellow to Green.
Those in Green have taken a step closer to achieving the Blue tier.
Amid an increase in vaccination rates, Adek carried out a survey in tandem with schools to assess parents’ opinions about immunisation against Covid-19.
The survey found that 94 per cent of those aged 16 and above were vaccinated, as were 70 per cent of children aged between 12 and 15, and 40 per cent of the children under 12.
Adek said vaccination rates doubled for children under 12 in the two weeks since the Blue Schools initiative was launched.
The regulator is working with health authorities to provide dedicated vaccination centres for Abu Dhabi pupils.
Since the initiative’s activation two weeks ago, we have seen a prominent increase in student vaccination rates SARA MUSALLAM Chairwoman of Adek