Balochistan decides not to shut schools if Covid-19 cases surge | Pakistan Today

Balochistan decides not to shut schools if Covid-19 cases surge

QUETTA: The Balochistan government has changed its policy for the closure of schools after months-long lockdown due to coronavirus and decided not to shut educational institutions again.

The authorities on Wednesday decided not to close schools and colleges again despite a spike in cases in order to recover the academic loss of the students.

It has been decided to put infected persons into quarantine facilities instead of shutting down the whole institution over detection of the virus. The education authorities issued orders for the full resumption of academic sessions in educational institutions across the province. Moreover, the middle schools in Balochistan administered by local governments were also reopened following the orders of the provincial government.

The director of the provincial schools’ department announced that the primary section will be reopened from September 30.

Earlier in the day, secondary schools in Punjab, Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) reopened today as students from classes six to eight returned to their schools after nearly six months. In Sindh, however, classes for grade six to eight will start from September 28.

According to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued by the government, masks have been made mandatory for all teachers and students, while educational institutions are required to ensure the availability of sensitizers at their entrances.

Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood on last Tuesday formally announced the decision to start secondary classes in schools. He, however, said that the Sindh government had decided to further review the Covid-19 situation during this week and resume on-campus classes for VI to VIII graders from September 28.

Mahmood said that after strictly monitoring the Covid-19 situation for the next one week, the government would be able to make a decision about reopening of primary level institutions. He urged parents, students and teachers to strictly follow the SOPs to keep the virus at bay.