The Education Bureau (EDB) announced on Friday that all students and teaching staff must continue to take daily rapid antigen tests (RATs) before they enter school premises during the 2022-23 academic year. In a statement, the EDB also stated that there will be no full-day classes unless individual schools or classes met the 90% vaccination rate requirement.
According to the EDB statement, the daily RAT testing requirement — which was supposed to end when the 2021-2022 school year concluded — will continue “until further notice”. All students and teaching staff must conduct their tests in the morning, and if they get positive results, declare them on the government website within 24 hours and not enter school premises.
Secondary schools may have full-day classes for the entire school if 90% of the students have received two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine, and all teaching staff have valid vaccine passes. If the vaccination rate among students in individual classes is 90% or higher, schools may arrange for whole-day schooling and other activities for these classes.
However, there will be no whole-day face-to-face classes for primary school students and kindergarteners as they are “young and have lower self-care abilities”. In addition, the vaccination rate among the 3-11 age group is still relatively low (77.58% with one dose, and 62.11% with second doses). In addition, tutorial schools may only conduct half-day classes, but international schools will get more flexibility depending on each school’s situation.
Secondary and primary school students who have had two Covid-19 shots may take part in extra-curricular and mask-off activities, both in class and after school hours. These conditions do not apply to kindergarteners, who may only attend half-day classes.
Header image credits: FatCamera via Canva