SINGAPORE: Almost 90 per cent of students in graduating cohorts have signed up to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in the week after they were invited to do so, Education Minister Chan Chun Sing said on Monday (Jun 7). Of these, half have got their first shots.
This comes as the first of four dedicated Ministry of Education (MOE) vaccination centres, ITE College Central, began operations. The other three centres – located at Raffles City Convention Centre, ITE College East and ITE College West - will be progressively opened in the coming days, said Mr Chan.
Each ITE centre can take up to 1,600 vaccination slots a day, "comparable" to community vaccination centres, while Raffles Convention Centre can handle up to 2,000 slots a day.
In a Facebook post, Mr Chan said that four out of five students in polytechnics and the first year of junior college have signed up, as have five out of seven students in Primary 6 to Secondary 3.
Invitations to receive the COVID-19 vaccine were progressively rolled out to students, starting with graduating cohorts from secondary schools and at pre-university levels, in particular students sitting for the GCE N-, O- and A-Level examinations.
READ: More than 400,000 students aged 12 and above to receive COVID-19 vaccination invite from Jun 1
Mr Chan said he was “grateful for everyone’s understanding and care to prioritise our graduating and younger cohorts in this national effort”, adding that the invitations will be extended to students in autonomous universities starting on Tuesday.
“We will continue reaching out to our students and families who need more help to register and get their vaccinations done,” he said.
MOE announced on May 31 that more than 400,000 students will be eligible after the Health Sciences Authority approved the use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for those aged 12 to 15.
Bookings opened on Jun 1, with the earliest slots available from Jun 3. The vaccination exercise for students is expected to be completed by August, MOE had said.