Biosecurity: A boarding education in the post-COVID world
COVID-19 and its impacts on education
The current coronavirus pandemic has far-reaching implications for all sectors of society, and education is no exception. A report from the United Nations estimates that approximately 1.6 billion students worldwide are living under its impacts. Most educational institutions have undergone a period of closure and are adapting to a switch to online teaching. In addition to the usual safety measures, they are under unprecedented pressure to safeguard biosecurity. The situation facing international students is especially harsh, with some being forced to go home early while others are stuck and unable to return. All of these pose uncertainties to the future of the education landscape.
Our previous articles have discussed many merits of boarding education, and biosecurity can now be added to the list. As all students live on site, it would be possible to implement a full set of infection prevention measures in the face of a pandemic. Restrictions would be placed on students and even staff leaving the campus during weekends and holidays. Unlike the case of a day school, the risk associated with students commuting to school after close contact with others back home is neutralised. A relatively isolated environment can be created in which learning can continue with minimal disruption.