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Thousands of Cuban students return to classrooms to fulfill their dream

December 08, 2021

Original Article:

The original article requires translation.

More than 84,000 final year high school, pedagogical and professional technical students reincorporated into Cuban classrooms this week after several months of virtual classes due to the pandemic seeking to fulfill their dream: to graduate.

The classroom teaching period has been gradually restarted in all the country's provinces, except in Pinar del Río (west), Sancti Spíritus (center), Las Tunas (east) and the municipality of Santa Cruz del Sur, in the center- eastern Camaguey.

Among other factors, this has been made possible by the advance of mass vaccination against covid-19 in Cuba, where 50% of the population (5.6 million people) have already completed the three-dose schedule of local formulas. Abdala, Soberana 02 and Soberana Plus.

Ismerys and Iván share a course with other 471 classmates from the last grade of high school from the Eduardo Delgado Pre-University Institute in the Havana municipality of Boyeros.

In this educational center, visited by an Efe team, the new normal is accompanied by strict protection measures to avoid contagion because, in the words of Ismerys, "you have to meet the goal of graduating and going to university."

The young woman commented that even when teleclasses (on national television and online platforms) worked for her, "a teacher who explains the doubts personally is not the same."

At his side, Iván takes advantage of the 15-minute staggered recess to remember that it is "essential to comply with the distance measures and to be able to graduate, because we have taken two courses like this."

Lorenis de la Caridad is another of the girls who was very excited to “return” since, like her classmates, she seeks to graduate.

She highlighted the “hard and intense” work of the teachers at the center by sending them study materials when the classes were on television.

In that capital institution there are a total of 1,396 students between 15 and 18 years of age who are preparing during three courses to enter Higher Education, explained its director, Arday Prieto.

The teacher assured that it is mandatory to wear a mask, wash hands and maintain distance between students, a regulation whose compliance is sometimes difficult to control.


After the start of the pandemic in Cuba in March 2020, the different levels of education adopted variants such as the transmission of classes on national television and courses enabled on digital platforms for universities.

The current 2020-2021 school period was resumed a month ago throughout the country in the form of teleclasses and distance after being interrupted in April 2020, when they confirmed the first positive of the coronanavirus.

Last fall, schools in the provinces least affected by the virus resumed face-to-face classes, but the latest outbreak at the end of last year marked the return to distance education throughout the country.

The Cuban Minister of Education, Ena Elsa Velázquez, commented to the press in September that the beginning of the upcoming 2021-2022 academic year under normal conditions is scheduled for the end of February or the beginning of March next year.

He explained that hygiene measures such as the use of a mask, social distancing and frequent hand washing will continue.

The owner also commented that Cuba aspires to have its usual school period from September to July, complete and in person for the 2023-2024 academic year.

Meanwhile, the challenge is difficult for students like Ismerys, Iván and Lorenis, whose only dream is to be able to finish, despite the pandemic, and reach a university degree.


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