They will now reopen on August 30
Educational institutions across Sindh will remain closed for another one week, Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali Shah said Friday. This means that schools will now reopen on August 30, Monday.
The decision was announced in a meeting of the coronavirus taskforce. “In the present Covid-19 situation we can’t afford to reopen schools,” he said.
Schools in the province were to reopen from August 23 with 50% attendance. Earlier this week, the health ministry had advised schools, colleges, universities to call students on alternate days. It recommended that primary schools should be closed for an additional 10 days.
Schools across the province were closed on July 14 following a surge in coronavirus cases. Schools were closed for classes one to eight, while students of class nine and above were allowed to only sit for their exams.
Educational institutions were expected to reopen on August 2 but the date has been postponed because of the lockdown imposed by the Sindh government. All malls, public offices, shops, and markets have been closed in the province till August 8 because of the rise in coronavirus cases.
On August 8, the Sindh government decided to keep schools closed till Muharram 10. Inter and matric exams, on the other hand, resumed on August 10.
Schools across Pakistan reopened on August 2 with 50% attendance.
Private School Federation Chairperson Kashif Mirza has rejected the government’s decision.
He remarked, “how will you curb the virus spread when everything else is open? I want to appeal to the prime minister and chief minister to call students back to school with SOPs.”
The chairperson assured that most of the teaching and non-teaching staff members at schools have been vaccinated against the virus.
Haider Ali, the chairperson of All Sindh Private Schools and Colleges Association, gave weight to Mirza’s stance. “The government should reopen schools with SOPs and mandatory vaccination.”
More than 600,000 students at public schools and 800,000 students at private schools have dropped out of educational institutions in the last two years. “All the associations will sit together and announce our collective response on this decision,” he added.