Maryam Abeeb, Abuja
The Federal Government through the Ministry of Education has set guidelines for school’s owners as all schools across the country plans to reopen on Oct. 12.
This was made known in a press briefing held in Abuja, the Minister of Education, Adamu Adamu, announced the reopening of the schools, while explaining that the COVID-19 curve has been flattened.
According to the Minister, all schools owners are urged to put in place systems that meet the ‘’safe distancing procedures, develop and display at schools, simple context-specific reference protocols on day to day actions to be operated in each school.
‘’Conduct risk assessment with a view to understanding the gaps in the system that can increase the risk of transmission and make recommendations for addressing gaps, safety and hygiene in all stages and phases of the schools reopening process which promote behaviors that reduce spread , such as school commutes, safe distancing , frequent hand washing and the use of facemasks.
‘’Other guiding frameworks include sensitization and monitoring procedures, ensure adequate water, sanitation and Hygiene facilities across the school premises, encouraging use of open spaces for gathering and promoting outdoor activities.
There should be regular temperature checks for all the visitors coming into the schools using infrared thermometers, establish a staff /students committee for regular surveillance, monitoring and enforcement for COVID-19 guidelines,’’ he stated.
He enjoined all states and private schools to fix their resumption date in line with the COVID-19 protocols.
He said that any schools that failed to comply with the guidelines of and should there be any outbreak risk closure of their schools.
According to him, having taken that painful but necessary decision, the government has not rested on its oars in the areas of consultation with stakeholders, putting together guidelines for reopening of schools and preparations required of school owners to reopen.
” We have consulted widely with stakeholders in the sector, including the Association of Private School Owners, (APSON), National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), Provosts of Colleges of Education, Rectors of Polytechnics, Vice Chancellors of Universities, State governors, our development partners, Honorably Commissioners of Education and relevant international organizations.
” Consequently, after due consultation with the Presidential Committee on COVID-19, we have decided that our 104 Unity Colleges should reopen on the 12th of October 12th, 2020.
” State and Private School owners will work out the modalities for the re-opening of schools under their purview,’ he said.
The Minister enjoined School owners to ensure social distancing procedures, develop and display at schools and conduct risk assessment with a view to understanding the gaps in the system.
The Minister warned that any school owner that does not comply with the guidelines and outbreak occurs in the school due to negligence, risks closure.