Pre-schools gear up for reopening with ABCs of staying Covid-safe

Minister for Social and Family Development Desmond Lee visiting My First Skool @ Block 491 Admiralty Link, where children have designated spots marked out to keep a safe distance during lessons.
Minister for Social and Family Development Desmond Lee visiting My First Skool @ Block 491 Admiralty Link, where children have designated spots marked out to keep a safe distance during lessons.PHOTO: MSF

From getting back-to-school resource kits ready to marking out designated seats for children, pre-school centres are preparing to welcome them back from Tuesday.

Minister for Social and Family Development Desmond Lee visited My First Skool @ Block 491 Admiralty Link yesterday to observe the "Covid-Safe ABC" measures on access, behaviour and classroom management being put in place.

Examples include restricting entry of individuals who may pose a higher risk of transmission, downsizing groups for class acti-vities and staggering the use of common areas and facilities by different classes.

Mr Lee said in a Facebook post yesterday that staff at the My First Skool centre have used stickers in classrooms to mark out designated seats for the children and safe distancing spaces in the toilets.

"Safe behaviours will be explained to the children so that they understand why these measures are necessary," said Mr Lee.

To maintain a clean environment, pre-schools have also stepped up the cleaning and disinfection of premises and equipment, especially high-touch points and items, he said.

Staff have worked out a schedule for the use of common facilities like play areas to minimise interaction.

The Covid-Safe ABCs are "new habits that we must cultivate", said Mr Lee.

Over the next two weeks, the Early Childhood Development Agency will partner pre-schools to instil these habits into the daily routines of staff and children.

 
 
 

Thanking all pre-school staff for their resilience and collective efforts in ensuring a clean and Covid-safe environment for children, Mr Lee said: "During the uncertainties as the Covid-19 situation evolved, the teachers and staff have put the interests of the children first.

"There were difficult decisions to be made and strict processes to implement. You have rallied around one another to ensure children and families continued to be supported even outside the classroom...

"This is a wonderful reflection of the strong community spirit, professionalism and passion of our early childhood sector."

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 30, 2020, with the headline 'Pre-schools gear up for reopening with ABCs of staying Covid-safe'. Print Edition | Subscribe