Covid-19: wearing a mask, saliva testing, exercising… a new health protocol at school before the start of the school year in September

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The Ministries of Education and Health have presented the new guidelines to teachers’ unions in the context of the fight against Covid-19. Wearing a mask, saliva testing and sports activities… took stock of this new health protocol.

Back to School, 1er September will not happen without a health protocol. And this one is already done. On Tuesday 12 July, the Ministry of Education presented to the teachers’ unions the health protocol that is planned for the start of the school year in September 2022. The height of this protocol will only be determined at the end of August. Local authorities and parent federations should also be consulted about this.

The Ministry foresees three levels of measures that can be activated depending on the general health context (nature of the variants, hospital situation, etc.). A period of ten days is announced for the implementation of a transition from one level to another. Here are the main points of this new protocol:

Three levels of vigilance instead of four

  • Level 1 : a reminder of barrier gestures and the restriction of gatherings
  • Level 2: it involves increased vigilance, with a reinforcement of barrier gestures. With regard to indoor sports activities, a distance adapted to sports practice will have to be respected. In the canteen, from level two, it is mandatory in the first degree to bring your meal with your class to limit mixing.
  • Level 3 : it is activated when the situation is very unfavorable. In particular, it includes a limitation of physical education activities. Only low-intensity activities compatible with wearing a mask are allowed indoors with distancing rules.

As for positive students, they will have to remain “quarantine” but contact cases no longer have to test or isolate themselves. It’s over for saliva testing, too. Regarding the wearing of a mask, the protocol provides for “a alignment of the school with the general population. There is no specific rule for the school environment,” said Marie-Hélène Piquemal, National Vice-President of the Staff Union. Education.

A protocol praised by the unions

The teachers’ unions were on Tuesday 12 July in the ‘partnership body’ that brings together the Ministries of Health and National Education to clarify the health strategy.

Guislaine David, co-secretary-general and spokesperson for the teachers’ union SNUipp-FSU, welcomed this new protocol “which is adapting to the situation two years after the start of Covid-19” on Wednesday, July 13 on franceinfo. The spokesperson also wants to underline the delay in the implementation of the transition from one level to another, which allows for anticipation: “We will not be able to decide on a level of the protocol and put it in the schools tomorrow.” we will have ten days of adjustment, which we have always asked for.

This school year, the unions had lamented the press announcements of the next day’s execution, which, as in January, had created a number of problems.

As a reminder, the former Minister of National Education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, had unveiled the new health protocol in schools on Sunday, January 2, for a return to school on Monday, 3 am. A “contempt” on the part of the minister according to the teachers. The latter had not communicated the health protocol directly upstream in order to better organize the start of the school year. A case that has caused a stir since two weeks later, the Médiapart site revealed that it was from Ibiza that this protocol had been announced.