Back to school in UAE: Some parents refused entry over lapsed Covid test results

Ismail Sebugwaawo /Abu Dhabi Filed on August 29, 2021
Photo by Ryan Lim/Khaleej Times

Pupils must carry reports that are no more than 96-hour-old, rules say.

Some Abu Dhabi schools said they faced a problem among parents whose negative PCR test result exceeded the 96-hour validity.

The parents were refused entry as they didn’t meet the requirement.

Mohamad Al Shama, managing director and partner of International Community Schools, said: “The negative PCR test result for these parents had exceeded the 96 hours stipulated by authorities. Our teams had to advise the parents to go back home and undergo new Covid tests as we couldn’t allow them to enter the school.”

Besides this issue, the first day of school was generally smooth. The five international schools he manages welcomed pupils from Grades 1 to 6 for face-to-face learning on Sunday. Those in upper classes will be coming back on Monday and Tuesday as the schools had opted for face-to-face learning model.

The National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority had earlier announced that students of all ages must have a negative PCR test result, taken within 96 hours, at the start of the school year.

During the first month, all students in the 12-18 age group — vaccinated or not — must get a PCR test result every two weeks, said the authorities. Parents accompanying their kids must also present a negative PCR test result taken within 96 hours.


Ismail Sebugwaawo

A professional journalist originating from Kampala, Uganda, Ismail is a happy father with strong attachment to family and great values for humanity. He has practiced journalism in UAE for the past 13 years, covering the country's parliament (FNC) and crimes, including Abu Dhabi Police, public prosecution and courts. He also reports about important issues in education, public health and the environment, with a keen interest in human interest stories. When out of reporting duties, he serves the Ugandan community in Abu Dhabi as he wants to see his countrymen happy. Exercising and reading are part of his free time.

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