ISLAMABAD: Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood announced that schools will be reopening across the country in three phases starting 18 January 2021 with strict implementation of standard operating procedures (SOPs).
The decision was made during the Inter-Provincial Education Ministers’ Conference (IPEMC) chaired by Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood and attended by officials of the Health Ministry to review the current coronavirus situation in the country.
Shafqat Mehmood while addressing media alongside Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Health Dr Faisal Sultan said that closing schools made a huge impact on the number of infections being reported across the country.
Addressing media personnel, SAPM on Health Dr Faisal Sultan said that they noted a decline in the infection rate after educational institutes were closed and urged everyone to keep following all precautionary measures related to COVID-19.
Schools reopening in phases
The Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood announced that class 9 through 12 will resume studies from 18 January 2021 during the first phase of reopening educational institutions.
Primary school through grade 8 students will return to school from 25 January 2021 in the second phase with all educational institutes following strict standard operating procedures (SOPs).
Inter provincial Education Ministers meeting held today. Health situation was carefully considered and it was decided that classes appearing for Board and Cambridge exam that is 9,10,11,12, O and A level, will reopen on Jan 18. Classes pre school to 8 will reopen on Jan 25. 1/2— Shafqat Mahmood (@Shafqat_Mahmood) January 4, 2021
All schools will have 50 percent students attending classes on alternate days like before to maintain social distancing according to the federal education minister.
Meanwhile, all universities across the country will start on-campus classes from 1 February 2021, which is the last phase of reopening educational institutes.
School administrators and teachers will be allowed to go back starting 11th January to prepare for the arrival of student when schools reopen.
2/2 All higher education institutions/ universities will reopen on Feb 1. However online classes will start for them on Jan 11. Similarly all schools will reopen in January 11 for Administrators and teachers to prepare for arrival of students.— Shafqat Mahmood (@Shafqat_Mahmood) January 4, 2021
Furthermore, the federal education minister also said that online and home-based learning and commence from 11 January 2021.
Board examinations postponed
Federal education minister also said that all board exams have been postponed to May and June as students did not have enough time to prepare for their examination.
All Board exams have been postponed to May June. Let me emphasise that this year nobody will be promoted without exams— Shafqat Mahmood (@Shafqat_Mahmood) January 4, 2021
Reopening of schools in Punjab
The Punjab Education Minister Murad Raas also tweeted regarding the decision on reopening educational institutes throughout the province after the meeting.
“Classes 9, 10, 11, 12 to open on January 18th 2021.” said the education minister. “Classes ECE through 8th to open on January 25th, 2021.” he added.
“Universities to open on February 1st, 2021.” said Murad Raas in his tweet adding that all institutes will have 50 percent students on alternate days as before.
ANNOUNCEMENT:— Murad Raas (@DrMuradPTI) January 4, 2021
Opening of Educational Institutions in Punjab.
Classes 9,10,11,12 to open on January 18th 2021. Classes ECE through 8th to open on January 25th, 2021. Universities to open on February 1st, 2021. All institutions will have 50% students on alternate days as before.
It is pertinent to mention that the Federal Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood announced the closure of educational institutes from 26th November 2020 till 10th January 2021 in view of the rising number of coronavirus infections.
Initially the reopening of schools was scheduled for 11 January 2021 but keeping in view of the current situation, the education ministers decided to delay physical classes.