Masks and tests: School starts in the first federal states | free press

The holidays are over, now we are learning again: school starts in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and Schleswig-Holstein. The children and young people must continue to follow the corona rules.

Kiel (dpa) – After more than six weeks of vacation, the new school year starts this Monday in Schleswig-Holstein and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern. They are the first federal states in Germany. The new school year is also dominated by the coronavirus.

In Schleswig-Holstein, all indoor students are required to wear masks for the first three weeks of the school year. Those who have not been vaccinated or recovered should test themselves twice a week. This applies to both students and all employees.

Girls and boys no longer have to put on masks in the schoolyards. In the new school year you can also stay outside in any group – the «cohort rule» no longer applies.

Mask mandatory for everyone, testing for unvaccinated people

In Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania it is compulsory to wear a face mask for the first two weeks of school. In addition, the students and the unvaccinated teachers must take a corona test twice a week. In the second week of school there should be vaccination offers for adolescents from the age of 16 in school, in the first week the necessity should be asked.

According to the Minister of Education of Schleswig-Holstein, Karin Prien (CDU), the chances of starting the new school year are significantly better than in 2020. The background to this is in particular the progress made in vaccination. Significant progress has also been made in the field of digitization in schools. Vaccination campaigns in schools for pupils from the age of twelve and for employees will start on 19 August.

Making regional decisions

Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania Education Minister Bettina Martin (SPD) had announced that she would not close the schools across the board as a preventive measure, even though the incidence was high. District and city district health authorities must make decisions taking into account regional infection rates, as well as hospitalizations and intensive care patients. Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania has one of the lowest corona incidences nationwide, but is increasing.

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