Following the announcement on Fiji Day by Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama on Fiji attaining 80% vaccination target and other important announcements, the Ministry of Education is now ready to welcome year 12 and 13 students to resume studies and prepare for final examinations.

The Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts, Premila Kumar welcomed the Prime Minister’s announcement that year 12 and 13 students will return to classes on 1 November.

Minister Kumar said “In preparation for the reopening, I met yesterday with all of the Heads of Schools, who have prepared their schools for the students' return. I have emphasised that the protocols prepared by the Ministry of Health and Medical Services must be strictly followed for the safety of students, teachers and ancillary staff”.

A circular on the Ministry of Health and Medical Services protocols for schools has been sent to all Heads of Schools.

Minister Kumar further stressed that “year 12 and 13 students are to be guided on the topics that have been taught both face to face and remotely, and those which are required to be covered with ample time for revisions.’’ “We will provide replacement teachers for any school losing a teacher due to non-vaccination prior to the reopening; if it hasn't been already done.”

Minister Kumar reiterated to Heads of Schools to take responsibility to fully prepare the students for examinations in late January 2022. “I am also requesting parents and guardians to effectively manage their children’s study time at home as well. The Ministry wants our prospective tertiary students to be well prepared for the examinations”.

In addition to the need for adequate ventilation in schools, crowded areas should be avoided, masks must be worn, and social distancing should be maintained.

“The statistics show that there are 22,624 students in years 12 and 13. We are encouraging parents to get their children vaccinated for their own protection and for the protection of others,” said Minister Kumar.

Further information on the opening dates for the other classes will be advised in due course.