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Preventive Measures to Avoid the Transmission of COVID-19 in Teaching Institutions

Published on Apr 15, 2021   -  5 min read

Abstract

The protection of children and educational facilities from COVID-19 is essential. Precautions are required to prevent the possible spread of COVID-19 in school environments; still, care must be taken to avoid disgracing students and staff who the virus may have endangered.

Contents

The general preventive measures of COVID-19 involve simple public health measures to decrease the risk of acquiring COVID-19. These measures have to be followed by all faculty, students, employees, and visitors in skill or entrepreneurship training organizations, higher educational institutions conducting doctoral courses, and post-graduate studies in technical and professional programs requiring laboratory or experimental work. In the inadequacy of a vaccine or effective therapeutic medications, preventive measures such as good hygiene practices, handwashing, cough etiquette, disinfection of surfaces, and social distancing, describe the significant weapons against COVID-19.

What Is COVID-19?

COVID-19 is a modified strain of coronavirus that has not been identified earlier in humans. The COVID-19 is the cause of respiratory illness disorder first detected in Wuhan, Hubei province, China.

What Are the List Symptoms of COVID-19?

The symptoms may include:

How to Prevent COVID-19 Transmission?

How to Implement Protective Measures in Educational Institutions?

1. Institutions that are conducting skill or entrepreneurship training institutions, higher educational institutions teaching doctoral courses, and post-graduate studies should only be allowed to open outside the restriction zones. Further, students and staff living in restriction zones will not be permitted to visit the Institution. Staff and students should also be instructed not to go to areas falling under containment zones.

2. Any students, parents, young people, carers, or visitors should not enter the childcare or education institution if they have symptoms of COVID-19.

3. Before resumption of activities, all work areas intended for the conduct of skill or entrepreneurship training, doctoral courses, and post-graduate studies, including hostels, other common utility areas, and laboratories, should be sanitized with 1% Sodium Hypochlorite solution, with special attention to constantly touched surfaces.

4. Wherever skill-based training on equipment is predicted to be utilized, place the equipment 6 feet apart, wherever possible, to promote physical distancing. Similarly, use any outdoor space by relocating equipment outside like in the verandah, courtyard, shed, etc.

5. Instead of biometric attendance, alternate arrangements for contactless attendance may be made.

6. To secure queue management, make specific markings on the floor with a gap of 6 feet.

7. The institute should display state helpline numbers and numbers of local health authorities etc., to faculty, trainees, or staff to contact in case of any emergency.

8. All air conditioning agents' temperature settings should be between 24-30 Celsius.

9. Lockers of students will be in use as long as physical distancing and general disinfection are maintained.

10. Prominent display of the signages, banners, and standees must intimate the dos and don'ts for the staff and students.

What Are The Materials To Be Made Available In Educational Institutions?

1. Appropriate backup stock of personal protection objects like face covers or masks, visors, hand sanitizers, etc., shall be made ready by management to the teachers and staff.

2. Provide a sufficient supply of thermal guns, alcohol wipes or 1% sodium hypochlorite solutions, disposable paper towels, soap, and IEC materials.

3. A pulse oximeter to check the oxygen saturation levels of any symptomatic person must be arranged.

4. Ensure availability of adequate covered dustbins and trash cans.

5. Provision for proper disposal of used personal protection items and general waste.

6. Housekeeping staff to be informed and trained about norms for waste management and disposal.

What are the Methods To Be Followed Once The Schools Are Opened?

At the Entry Point:

  1. Entrance to have necessary hand hygiene (sanitizer dispenser) and thermal screening equipment. Multiple gates or separate gates, if feasible, should be used for entry and exit while maintaining physical distancing norms.

  2. Only asymptomatic persons (faculty, employees, students, and visitors) are allowed on the premises. If a faculty, employee, student, or visitor is symptomatic, they should be referred to the nearest health center.

  3. Posters or standees on preventive measures about COVID-19 should be displayed prominently.

  4. Proper crowd management in the corridors, parking lots, and lifts duly allowed by the administration or any out-sourced agencies shall regulate physical distancing measures.

  5. Entry of visitors should be strictly controlled or restricted.

In the Classroom and Laboratories:

  1. Seating arrangement in the classroom to be ensured with 6 feet distance between chairs, desks, etc.

  2. Wavering of classroom exercises, with separate timing slots, allows for adequate physical distancing and classroom disinfection.

  3. Academic scheduling should have an inter-mix of general classroom teaching and online teaching or evaluations. The teaching faculty will ensure that they and the students wear masks during the teaching hours.

  4. Sharing of items like laptops, stationery, notebooks, etc., amongst students should be prevented as much as possible.

  5. Ensure that the equipment has been sanitized, particularly the constantly touched surfaces, before each use.

  6. Ensure that members sanitize their hands before and after using training tools. For such a purpose, hand sanitizer should be provided at workstations or simulation labs.

For Students Coming From Different Places:

  1. Students who are not residents of the city or town, do not have any assistance at home, or do not have a facility for online education may be prioritized for allotment of hostel rooms.

  2. Asymptomatic people having any contact or those who traveled from an infected area must be adequately screened.

  3. Students coming from various locations may bring negative RT-PCR reports, as per State protocols, and self-monitor their health for 14 days.

  4. Screening of every person staying in the hostel needs to be done before they start staying at the hostel. Only asymptomatic people should be allowed to join.

  5. Proper crowd management in the hostel and outside premises like parking lots duly following physical distancing measures shall be ensured.

  6. In shared rooms or hostels, the beds should be placed at a distance of 6 feet from each other.

  7. Temporary partitions may be considered, if possible.

  8. Any symptomatic student should be quickly given a single room and then implemented with necessary medical care.

Hygiene and Sanitation of the Institution:

  1. Floors to be cleaned every day with a disinfectant.

  2. Provision of soap in toilets and hand sanitizers in other common areas should be placed in sufficient quantity.

  3. Cleaning and regular disinfection using 1% Sodium Hypochlorite to be done infrequently touched surfaces like doorknobs, handrails, chairs, elevator buttons, benches, washroom fixtures, etc., to be made mandatory in classrooms, lockers, laboratories, parking areas, other common areas, before the beginning of classes and at the end of the day.

  4. Teaching materials like computers, laptops, printers shall be regularly disinfected with a 70% alcohol wipe.

  5. Should ensure deep cleaning of all drinking and handwashing stations, washrooms, and lavatories.

  6. Should ensure disposal of used face covers or masks in separate covered bins.

  7. Residential buildings, if any, also need to be sanitized regularly.

Therefore, following the norms below will help students and staff stay safe even in educational and teaching institutions:

  1. Promoting behaviors that decrease the spread of COVID-19.

  2. Sustaining healthy environments.

  3. Maintaining healthy operations.

  4. Preparing for when someone gets sick.

 

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Last reviewed at:
15 Apr 2021  -  5 min read

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