19 September 2020
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Schools, colleges, universities, and madrassahs across Pakistan reopened on September 15 after almost six months.

The educational institutes are being opened in phases. Universities, colleges, and class IX and X will resume from September 15 (today). The students from class VI to VIII will be called to schools from September 23 and the students enrolled below class VI will be called in from September 30.

All educational institutions across the country were closed in late February after coronavirus cases had spiked. According to reports, the cases are on a downward trend now.

Many educational institutes had moved to online classes to ensure that the learning of the students is not hampered by the lockdown. The examinations were also not held as students were given passing grades.

To compensate for the lost time, Pakistan’s educational institutions have decided that they will remain open on Saturdays and will have no winter vacations this year, according to a notification issued by the federal education ministry.

SOPs for schools

On September 4, Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mahmood and Dr Faisal Sultan, the PM’s assistant on health, had issued a list of precautionary measures that all schools would have to follow when they reopen.

The instructions are listed below:

First secondary classes will start first after which primary classes will beginThe number of students in a class will be reduced, which means that half of the students will attend the session one day and the other half on the other dayStudents will have to wear face masks at all times. Dr Sultan said that it’s better if the masks are made at homeSocial distancing and washing hands should be strictly implementedSanitisers should be installed in schools and students should be encouraged to use them repeatedlyEvery student attending school in-person will have to get tested for coronavirus in two weeksStudents with lower immunity levels should not be sent to schoolStudents will have lunch inside class during breaksMahmood had stressed the importance of the role of principals and teachers in the implementation of SOPs. “The student will be the responsibility of the school,” he had said.

Abdul Gh Lone

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