Preparation for phased reopening of schools underway nationwide

Mohd Radzi (left) together with Dr Noor Hisham (third left) inspecting the arrangement made in the school lab in accordance to social distancing rules.

KUCHING, June 4: Form Five and Six students will be the first batch of learners to return to classes as preparations are currently underway for the phased reopening of schools across the country.

However, the Ministry of Education (MOE) maintained that no date has been fixed yet for the partial resumption of schools across the country but plans and preparations are underway for the safe return of students according to guidelines and standard operating procedure (SOP) issued today.

Its Minister Dr Mohd Radzi Md Jidin reiterated that the date for schools reopening will be announced at least two weeks prior to the phased reopening of schools based on the advice from the Ministry of Health (MOH) and current Covid-19 situation in the country.

“When schools reopen, priority will be given to students in Form Five and Six who will be taking the SPM, SVM, STPM and STAM exams.

“They are more mature and easier to manage and in following the guidelines and SOP implemented for schools,” he emphasised in an interview with Bernama in clarifying parents’ concerns that all levels of schools will resume back to their academic activities.

He reminded that any news circulating on social media or Whatsapp on full reopening of schools were fake as it was not from the Ministry.

When a specific date has been fixed, Mohd Radzi said that all the secondary schools nationwide numbering nearly 3,000 will be opened.

“The state and district education departments and offices will help to monitor and ensure that all schools comply with the guideline and SOP implemented.

“We are confident that schools management and teachers will ensure these guidelines are being adhered to because what’s important is for children to return to schools safely,” he said.

Mohd Radzi hopes students will strictly observe social distancing throughout the time in schools as well as along their journey to and fro from schools.
“The school’s SOP will be improved from time to time as needed depending on the implementation of the current guidelines, to ensure students can continue learning in a safe environment,” he stressed.

Among the new normal to be observed when schools resume include taking body temperature upon arrival at school gate, eating in class during recess time, staged recess period, mandatory to set up isolation room, social distancing in and outside of classroom including teachers’ room and traffic guidance for walking paths.

As for schools with hostel facilities, social distancing rules will be strictly applied with beds placed 1 meter away from each other as well as when eating together in a hall.

Mohd Radzi together with Health director-general Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah and National Security Council (NSC) director-general Mohd Rabin Basir had visited SMK Engku Husain in Semenyih, Selangor to see preparations done for the reopening of schools post-Conditional Movement Control Order.—DayakDaily