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Govt to observe COVID-19 situation until February 4 for reopening schools, colleges

| Updated: January 25, 2021 13:14:41

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Govt to observe COVID-19 situation until February 4 for reopening schools, colleges

The government will take a decision on reopening high schools and colleges after observing the coronavirus situation until February 4.

Education Minister Dipu Moni revealed the plan at a virtual event to mark the International Day of Education on Sunday after briefing parliament about the guidelines earlier in the day, reports bdnews24.com.

At the event, she said the government has ordered the educational institutions to complete the preparation for in-person lessons within February 4, attaching maximum priority to the health of the students, teachers and support staff so that they can reopen anytime amid the outbreak.

 “In the meantime, we will decide following the national advisory committee’s recommendation whether to take the students back to classrooms when the lessons begin in the week after February 4 or wait some more days,” she said.

Some countries have reopened schools while many in Bangladesh demand that the government allow schools to restart as well.

But Dipu Moni said all must keep in mind that a full-scale reopening amid the COVID-19 situation will not be appropriate in densely populated Bangladesh because the students most of the times need to take lessons in packed classrooms.

She said the syllabuses of the SSC and HSC examinations have been shortened so that the students are required to attend a limited number of classes to complete the study.

Md Mahbub Hossain, the secretary for secondary and higher education, said the teachers will have to monitor which students are absent after the reopening and report to the authorities so that the government can take proper steps to cut the dropout rate to a minimum.

Mohibul Hassan Chowdhoury Nowfel, the deputy minister of education, and Md Aminul Islam, the secretary of technical and madrasa education, were also present.

Earlier in parliament, Dipu Moni said the schools and colleges will hold regular classes for students of grades 10 and 12 after the restart.

Students of other grades will be required to attend one class a week in their institutions.

Considering the large number of students, it will not be possible to maintain social distancing norms if all of them returned to school at the same time, the minister said.

Therefore, arrangements will be made to conduct classes on alternate days.

The government on January 23 instructed educational institutions of secondary and higher secondary levels to prepare for the resumption.

All the educational institutions have been closed since mid-March 2020 due to the outbreak. The government has extended the shutdown a number of times until January 30.

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