Saturday, 6 September 2014

Nigeria primary and secondary schools now reopen Sept 22 by Minister of Education

Public and private primary and secondary schools across the country will now reopen on Monday, September 22, 2014.
The schools, which are on holiday, were initially ordered by the Federal Government to delay their resumption until October 13, 2014 on account of the outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in the country.
The Minister of Education, Ibrahim Shekarau, told reporters in Abuja yesterday that the new resumption date was arrived at during an emergency meeting with state commissioners of education.
He said the precautionary measures put in place to curb the spread of EVD were still intact.
The meeting directed states which are yet to appoint desk officers on Ebola information to do so before September 22.
Each state ministry of education is expected to train at least two officials for every school on how to handle any suspected case of Ebola and also embark on immediate sensitization of all teaching and non-teaching staff in all schools on preventive measures.
He added: “All primary and secondary schools, both public and private, should be provided with a minimum of two blood pressure measuring equipment by the state ministries of education.
“The state ministries should determine the number of such equipment required and forward same to the Federal Ministry of Education.
“The Federal Ministry of Education will liaise with the Federal Ministry of Health to ensure that appropriate equipment is procured.
“Those states that have not complied with this agreement should please do so.
“State governments are called upon to support their state ministries of education with all necessary funds to ensure effective implementation of these preventive measures.
“Regular washing of hands is part of the preventive measures. There must be steady supply of water in schools. All states should ensure that this is put in place as the schools reopen.
“All state ministries of education should again establish a working and monitoring team for effective supervision of school activities before and after the opening of schools.
Each state ministry of education should appoint a designated desk officer who should also receive appropriate training and who must report on a daily basis to the commissioner on situation in the schools.
“The names of such desk officers, their phone numbers and e-mail addresses should be communicated to the headquarters of the Federal Ministry of Education.”
Some parents and teachers who spoke with our correspondent in different interviews yesterday received the news of the resumption date with mixed reactions.
One of them, Mr Olushola Ogunsiji, who also is the Principal of the School for the Blind in Lagos, said the availability of anti-Ebola vaccine ought to be the criteria for resumption of children in schools.
“I think the Federal Government should make the vaccines for the prevention of Ebola available to all children. Schools should have the vaccination ready for all children before the children resume.
“If that is done, then I will support the resumption of the children at their various schools. If it is not done, I cannot support the resumption.
“Ebola is an epidemic disease, so I do not support that the children should go out like that and become vulnerable.
“It is not safe yet to let the children return to school.”
Popular Lagos lawyer, Festus Keyamo, said:“The government has the data they are relying on. We do not have access to such data.
“If their data say that by the 22nd of September they should have been able to curtail Ebola disease, then we must support them. Again, of course, we would not want to disrupt the calendar of the school system

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