Gov’t extends date of schools reopening till February 1st

F.P. Report

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Government on Friday has decided extend the date of reopening of primary and middle schools (Class1-8) from January 25 to February 1st 2021.

The government sources said that they took this decision after analysis of current COVID-19 pandemic situation in the country. The extension has been taken to ensure the safety of children.

It should be noted that the Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mehmood announced the decision, at a press conference after a detailed meeting with Provincial Education and Health Ministers and Secretaries at National Command and Operation Center (NCOC).

In this meeting the authorities reviewed existing COVID-19 situation in the country preceding to formally announcing the decision of reopening of educational institutions across the country.

While addressing the press conference, Shafqat Mahmood underlined that the government’s prior decision will be followed regarding reopening of High & Intermediate Schools (9-12) from 18th of January and Universities from 1st February.

He also clarified that “This year no student will be promoted without examinations.”

Mahmood commented that the government would again review the pandemic situation during the next week prior to opening of primary schools on 1st February.

In the meeting, further decisions will be taken keeping in view positivity ratio in cities, he added.

During the press conference Mahmood said that educational institutions had been closed on November 26 because of the increasing trend in positivity rate which was 7.14 percent at that time.

The experts had now informed that due to closure of educational institutions, the positivity rate had declined from 7.14 to 6 percent. he added.

The coronavirus cases were still increasing in the country, he said. He also mentioned that because of pandemic the education sector had faced huge loss due to pandemic during the last eight months.

He also talked baot the urban centers saying that the infection in major urban centers was still higher, therefore in the next week, NCOC would decide about re-opening of educational institutions in high risk cities.

Mahmood also quoted the coronavirus cases in the country saying that the currently average deaths had been counted 44 per day as compared to 46 few days back.  The daily cases average in the country was around 2300 as compared to 3000 few days back, he mentioned.

He further informed that the critical patients in the country have increased from 1958 to 2339.