TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - The government has officially mandated school reopening amid the Covid-19 pandemic on conditions that it will be through limited face-to-face learning and all teachers must have been vaccinated.
This policy is noted in a Joint Ministerial Decree signed by Education and Culture Minister Nadiem Makarim, Religious Affairs Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas, Home Affairs Minister Tito Karnavian, and Health Minister Budi Gunadi Sadikin.
Nadiem clarified that the government is determined to reopen schools because Covid-19 vaccination for teachers has been ongoing. “The vaccination is divided into 3 stages," said Nadiem.
He explained that the first stage is for teachers of early childhood education (PAUD), elementary schools (SD), junior high schools (SMP), and their equivalents, the second stage is for teachers of senior high schools (SMA) and their equivalent, and the last stage is for lecturers of universities. The government targeted the program to complete in June 2021.
After the vaccination, the central and regional governments and the regional offices of the Religious Affairs Ministry will oblige schools to reopen under strict health protocols and combined with online learning.
“The decision is also in the hands of parents whether to allow their kids to undergo face-to-face learning or stick to online learning,” Nadiem said.
Indonesia is lagging behind 23 countries in East Asia and Asia Pacific region in reopening educational units, he informed. 85 percent of the countries in the areas have reopened schools.
Nadiem Makarim reminded that schools must comply with all predetermined health protocols, such as not opening canteens and having extracurricular activities. “In addition, if there is a positive case of Covid-19, the school will be closed immediately,” he said.