COVID-19: Educational institutions reopen across Pakistan after six months


ISLAMABAD: All the educational institutions including seminaries in the country have reopened from today after a six-month break amid concerns of implementation of COVID-19 safety protocols and fears of a second wave of the virus.

The government had decided to close school, colleges and universities in March in order to curb the spread of coronavirus. Sindh, however, had suspebded educational activities in the province on February 27 after detection of first COVID-19 case in Karachi.

On September 7, Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mahmood had announced that all higher education institutions in the country will reopen from September 15, while the students in grade IX to 12 will also return to school the same day.

“If all goes well, then students in grade VI to VIII will return to school on September 23, while students in the nursery to grade V will be back to school on September 30,” he said.

Over 30,000 religious seminaries across the country will also reopen in phases from Tuesday.

According to the guidelines issued by the government, the use of masks will be mandatory for all teachers and students, while schools, colleges and universities will ensure the presence of hand sanitizers at the entrance.

The National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) on Monday urged the parents and teachers to comply with the standard operating procedures (SOPs) issued for the safety of students.

In a statement, the NCOC called upon the administrations of educational institutions to ensure proper implementation of health guidelines such as mask-wearing, social distancing to keep the coronavirus at bay.

Read more: PM Imran welcomes children returning to schools

“By the will of Almighty Allah, all educational institutions are being opened in phases from September 15. Parents and teachers are requested to pay special attention to the given safety guidelines while sending their children to schools.”

It asked the parents to abstain from sending children to school if they show signs of cough or illness.

“If the condition is worse, the child should be tested immediately,” the NCOC advised.

It should also be ensured that children wash their hands regularly or use a hand sanitizer.

The transporters should also ensure social distance in their vehicles and make sure that the children were wearing face masks while sitting in the bus or car.

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