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Greece: Education Minister Kerameus outlines protocol for education system

Education Minister Niki Kerameus, in an interview with OPEN TV on Wednesday, stressed that there will be exclusively physical attendance of schools and universities classes this year.

Kerameus referred to the high percentage of vaccinated school teachers (80 pct), which in combination with the 10 pct who have contracted the novel coronavirus “offers a coverage of 90 pct”.

She noted that 28 pct of children between the ages of 15-18 have been vaccinated, as well as 14 pct of those aged 12-15, and urged parents to continue vaccinating children. She also explained that most people at home (parents, the elderly) are vaccinated.

If there are covid cases, she added, “it has been decided internationally that schools will remain open but there will be increased testing.” In particular, the class involved will do two rapid tests a week for free, while the vaccinated children will only do a self test. The children who sit closest to the student with Covid will have to be tested every day. Classes will stop if the number of cases is equal or more than 50 pct plus one of the students in the class.

Unvaccinated teachers are required to attend schools with two laboratory tests (PCR or Rapid) which they are responsible for obtaining and will be suspended from work if they do not comply. At the same time, Kerameus said that a system of very rapid recruitments has been established, in order to fill possible gaps within a few days.

For universities, which will open on October 1, the protocol will be stricter. Teaching staff and students must present either a certificate of vaccination or illness in the last six months or a laboratory test (PCR or Rapid) upon arrival. The certificates will be checked by the rectorial authorities. At the same time, she added, “processes are underway to establish a vaccination centre in every university in the country”.