4 March 2020, Hanoi, Vietnam: Despite no new confirmed cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Vietnam since 13 February 2020, Vietnamese schools remain shut as the government continues to implement a series of measures.
Here, at Aide et Action, we are working closely with schools in impacted areas to ensure the interests of the most marginalised children are put first. We have been working in Lai Chau, which borders China in northwest Vietnam province since 2016 to increase access to quality Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) for ethnic minority children. With the closure of schools confirmed until mid March, Aide et Action Southeast Asia Regional Project Officer Inès Provoost fears it is the most marginalised children that will be impacted the most.
Our activities are currently paused due to travel restrictions but we are working with local schools and teachers in villages in Lai Chau to mitigate the impact of emergency measures where possible. “We are in regular contact with schools to support them in providing guidance to children and families to promote learning at home”, says Huong. At the primary school level, teachers are sharing lesson plans with children and regularly checking in through phone calls, social networks and household visits if feasible.
We will be monitoring the situation closely, ready to be on-hand to advise schools on best practices for the safety and well-being of children.