The Education International Africa Region has adopted indicators for reopening of schools and other educational institutions and circulated them to member and partner organisations.
The indicators were adopted by the EIRAF Regional Committee in a virtual meeting. They consist of 10 points:
- Clear policy guidelines
Guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19 with the establishment of a committee to ensure that they are enforced. Information and updates should be provided to the school community.
- Social dialogue
Social dialogue between authorities and representative organisations of education staff for policy development and implementation.
- Emphasis on cleanliness
Thorough cleaning and fumigation of facilities should take place before classes are resumed and on a regular basis during the school year.
- Water and sanitation
Provision of safe and adequate running water and sanitation with special attention to facilities in rural and other marginalized areas.
- Physical and social distancing
Arrangement of facilities and transport to ensure social distancing.
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
Availability of PPE for teachers, education support personnel, and students.
- Persons with underlying medical conditions
Rules for support of learners and teachers with preexisting conditions as well as mechanisms to address symptoms of mental illness.
- Testing and Treatment
Availability of testing for education staff and students free of charge. Facilities for isolation and care in school facilitates staffed by health professionals.
- Equity and inclusion
Measures to ensure the return of all children. Equity audits should be undertaken to identify any inequities in the process of resumption of classes.
- Staffing and working conditions.
The number of teachers and education support personnel should be adequate to maintain quality education in pandemic circumstances. Funding should be provided for additional staff and to ensure decent salaries and working conditions as agreed with education unions.
The EIRAF indicators document includes WHO recommendations on measures that should be taken before restrictions on social and physical movement are lifted. It also provides links to several relevant EI publications.