Posted: Thursday June 17 2021 10:51 AM
The Government is once again focusing its attention on the return of students to class during the 2021-2022 academic year. A comeback still marked by the coronavirus pandemic, which the previous season caused more of a headache for the Ministry of Education and the Executive itself due to the way in which an educational model proposed in supports the health crisis.
Now, with the vaccination campaign active and society gradually returning to a new normal, the education sector is investigating the feasibility of rapidly vaccinating students with the aim of reclaiming ‘wasted’ time and space. as soon as possible the previous year. This is how Minister Isabel Celaá valued him, who hopes to be able to vaccinate all 12-year-old students at the beginning of September “to have them all together”.
Celaá acknowledged, in an interview with the program ‘La hora de la 1’, that his ministry is considering this option: “It may be that, for logistical reasons, students can be vaccinated in the first week of September, at the start of the course, in order to have them all together. While it was not discussed which vaccine could be used to immunize miners, there is every indication that it could be Pfizer.
Indeed, it is to date the only formula (two doses 21 days apart) to have received the approval of the European Medicines Agency to be administered to people aged 12 to 15 years. However, it is not excluded that in the coming months, the rest of the companies working on the COVID-19 vaccine may also receive permission from the body to extend the application of its remedies to younger groups.
It has not been determined to vaccinate them in educational centers, it is up to the Health to decide “
On the other hand, the holder of the Education portfolio did not wish to seize in order to assess the possibility that the vaccination of these minors could be carried out in the schools themselves. For the moment “it has not been determined to vaccinate them in the educational centers, it is for the Health to decide”, replied Celaá, although recently it has opened the door to this option if the right circumstances arise. : “Yes, it could be vaccinated (in schools). If health personnel are sent there, yes.”
He detailed some of the measures that have already been put in place and will remain in place to avoid as much as possible the risk of contagion in the classes, although he clarified that these could be changed – or even removed – depending on the way in which the epidemiological situation in Spain is developing as September approaches. “The masks and the ventilation went really well, let’s see what happens in September. Now we are having a class in which we have established an interpersonal distance of 1.2 meters, and we even hope to do without the distance of safety because vaccination allows us to, “said the minister.
About reinforcement teachers
Another important question regarding the start of the school year is what will happen to the nearly 40,000 substitute teachers hired during the pandemic. Reducing the interpersonal safety distance between students, as indicated by the Minister, would once again imply increasing the ratio of students per class, so that these teachers can be made redundant. This indicated that from Education, communities are requested to keep them in their posts, although the final decision rests with the autonomies.
“It is demanded that they keep them. There have been emotional and intellectual losses and these teachers are still needed. They have been very good at improving school results and the school climate”, argued the Minister of Education, who insisted that “these additional resources are maintained during this course”, assuring that the central government will help regional governments to “finance” the hiring of these teachers.
Could the Ministry of Health change the class ratios to force this situation? Celaá reminded that this “is regulated by law, and they are at the maximum.” He also added: “During this pandemic, the number of students per class has changed, and with back-up teachers, they can be changed in case there are additional spaces. Students work at different paces, and what matters is that, with digitization and with freer groups, they can follow their work in different groups ”.