Japan Hopes for Early Virus Detection at Schools by Test Kits

Politics Society Lifestyle

Tokyo, Aug. 26 (Jiji Press)--With schools welcoming their students back for the new term amid ever-spreading novel coronavirus infections, the Japanese government hopes to detect COVID-19 cases at an early stage by rapid test kits to prevent infection clusters within schools.

The government's measure, however, is not enough to dispel fears that the highly infectious delta variant of the coronavirus may spread among schoolchildren, and many within the education world are voicing concerns.

The central government will not ask for nationwide school closures for the new term after the summer breaks. Instead, it will leave the decision up to local governments.

While schools in some areas in Japan have extended the summer holidays, schools are expected to reopen gradually.

The central government announced on Wednesday that it will hand out antigen test kits for around 800,000 tests to schools such as elementary and junior high schools throughout the country from early September.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press