Deputy Minister of Health Nguyễn Trường Sơn said that the return of students to school after Tet holidays is completely grounded and possible. VNA/VNS Photo
HÀ NỘI — The Ministry of Education and Training (MoET), Ministry of Health (MoH) together with municipal and provincial authorities are determined to re-open schools no later than February 14.
During a meeting chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Vũ Đức Đam in Hà Nội on Monday, Deputy Minister of Education and Training Ngô Thị Minh said 14 localities nationwide have so far allowed in-person learning, 30 others combined both online and offline learning, and 19 others offered lessons online or via television.
On February 7 after Tết holidays, 35 more localities will re-open schools, bringing the total to 49 while 14 others will do the same on February 12.
Deputy Minister of Health Nguyễn Trường Sơn said that the return of students to school is completely grounded and possible, based on high vaccination rates and the low number of severe cases and low mortality.
“The Ministry of Health is basically in favour of the plan to send children back to school after the Lunar New Year.
"However, during the Tết holiday, we need to remain vigilant and closely monitor the developments of the disease, especially the Omicron variant,"
He added that after the Lunar New Year, the Ministry of Health will specifically assess the pandemic situation to give suggestions to the Ministry of Education and Training on the plan to get children back to school.
At the meeting, Deputy Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Đòan Văn Việt also suggested resuming tourism activities from May 1.
Under a pilot plan to welcome foreign tourists in the first stage from November 2021, as many as 8,500 visitors, mostly from Russia, the Republic of Korea and Singapore, had arrived by January 23.
Agreeing with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism (MoCST)'s proposal to reboot tourism activities from May 1, Deputy Minister of Health Sơn said the Health Ministry issued the Decision No.5772/QD-BYT on the process of issuing vaccine passports but it still needs input from the Ministry of Public Security, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism to control the entry of the Omicron variant to Việt Nam.
Discussions at the meeting suggested the MoH issue a new guideline on the level of the pandemic so that localities could adopt suitable measures when schools or tourism activities resume.
Others said children aged 5-11 should be allowed to go to school without conditions on vaccination. The MoET and MoH should direct localities to prepare for plans to deal with infections at schools.
Representatives from ministries and agencies proposed arranging more flights to carry overseas Vietnamese home in line with pandemic prevention and control regulations.
The MoCST was also urged to actively expand the pilot scheme to welcome foreigners if conditions allow, including extending their stay or taking them to areas where residents have been given the third vaccine shots. VNS