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After five semesters, university students return to lecture halls

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Some 320,000 students returned to public universities Sunday for the first time in almost two years. (Photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — Sunday saw the first in-class university lectures kick of a new academic year, as an estimated 320,000 students returned to the lecture halls and corridors buzzed with activity and chatter for the first time in almost two years.اضافة اعلان

Public universities began receiving students Sunday, while private universities are preparing to receive students from October 17.

The Ministry of Higher Education has launched a roadmap for a return to in-person studies at higher education institutions for the 2021/2022 academic year. 

The roadmap includes all public and private higher education institutions for all levels of study and the return to in-class learning.
 
The roadmap stressed the need to follow precautionary measures in order to reduce the number of infections that may arise among students. 

The plan is divided into three phases. The first phase includes preventive measures to be taken before students return to the university campus.

The second phase covers procedures to be taken while students are at the campus and covers lecture halls, labs, workshops, cafeterias, internal transport and female dormitories, as well as steps to supervise the work.

The third phase focuses on how to deal with infections that may arise on campus and those infected persons may come into contact with among the student body or university staff.

The plan applies Defence Order No. 32, which requires students, faculty members and other workers to have received the vaccine, and in the event that they hadn’t, they are required to take a PCR test twice a week, on Sundays and Thursdays.

The ministry also announced the adoption of the “Sanad” application, which shows if a person has been vaccinated or not, in order to ensure that students attending university have received their vaccines.

MP Bilal Al-Momani, head of the parliamentary education committee, said that the committee is glad that students are returning to the universities after such a long absence: “Life must go on and we have to return to normal, it is a must that we end our fear, face-to-face education is very necessary.”

Mokhles Al-Ebbini, director of public relations and spokesperson for Yarmouk University, said that the university has developed plans for the return of students in line with the recommendations of the Ministry of Higher Education, and that precautionary measures are a priority in the plan.

Ebbini said that the Sanad application is required of every student and that no student can enter the university campus unless they are wearing a mask.

“Yarmouk has more than 39,000 students, it is not logical to ask every one of them to adhere to the instructions, we believe that the students have a great deal of responsibility and awareness,” Ebbini said.

With regard to preventive measures, Ebbini said that the university has sterilized the classrooms and all facilities, and instructions will be given to students at the beginning of each lecture.

For his part, Mohammed Qutaishat, head of the Arab Open University, said: “It is true that we are a regional university, but we are happy that we have followed the roadmap set by the ministry in Jordan for the safe return to universities.” 

Qutaishat stressed the need to follow the precautionary measures that are applied on campus in order to avert any danger of infection. 

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