Coronavirus: HKDSE students allowed to bring hand sanitiser during assessment due to Covid-19


The HKEAA will also require students to wear masks and check their body temperature; candidates who cannot wear masks for medical reasons will sit separately

Nicola Chan |

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Students will be allowed to bring hand sanitiser to the exam as long as they get their invigilator's approval.

DSE students will be allowed to use their own hand sanitiser during the public exams, as long as they seek approval from the invigilators, the Hong Kong Examinations and Assessment Authority (HKEAA) told Young Post on March 13. 

In light of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, DSE candidates this year are required to wear surgical masks during the exams – and before entering the exam venue, according to the HKEAA. 

The guidelines on the authority’s website released on February 28 state that “invigilators may ask candidates to remove their surgical mask temporarily” when taking attendence to verify students’ identities during the exam. But there is no information on whether students will be allowed to sanitise their hands after touching their masks.

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However, according to the Centre for Health Protection’s guidelines on the proper use of face masks for the prevention of respiratory tract infection, individuals should “perform hand hygiene ... after touching the mask [they’re wearing]”. 

Responding to Young Post’s inquiry via email last Friday, a spokesperson for HKEAA’s Public Affairs and Communications Unit said candidates can leave their hand sanitiser under their chairs, but “would need to raise hands to ask for permission” from invigilators before applying it. “[They] should put it back under their chair after use,” the spokesperson added. 

Before entering the exam venues, students must put on their masks, measure their own body temperature, and have the “Candidate’s Declaration Form on Health” filled and signed. 

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Body temperature screening would be set up at the entrance of the majority of exam centres. For venues without such devices, infrared forehead or ear thermometers would be used to measure candidates’ body temperature, the HKEAA said. 

The spokesperson also urged candidates with a fever or acute respiratory tract infection symptoms not to attend the exams. Candidates with a body temperature of 38 degrees Celsius or above will be asked to leave the exam venue, while those “making false declarations may receive a penalty or even be disqualified from the whole examination”. 

Meanwhile, candidates who have successfully applied for exemptions from wearing face masks – due to medical reasons – will have to sit at the reserved section of their assigned exam hall, or be asked to take the exam in another room or centre.

For more details, students can check out