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Middle schools opening Wednesday

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Middle schools opening Wednesday
« on: September 22, 2020, 12:11:21 PM »
Middle schools opening Wednesday
RAWALPINDI:22 September:The middle school classes of grade six, seven and eight are all set to open from Wednesday after six months in the second phase of the government’s reopening process of the educational institutions after the easing of the coronavirus restrictions.

The classrooms would again be echoing with sounds of chattering children and yelling teachers over six months after the academic activities were stopped as part of social distancing measures to prevent the spread of novel coronavirus disease (Covid-19).

Officials at the Rawalpindi District Education Office told The Express Tribune that for the last couple of days, the sanitary staff and peons of schools were busy cleaning up the classrooms closed since the outbreak of novel coronavirus (Covid-19) in March.

They said that school heads have called in teaching and non-teaching officials on Tuesday (today) to plan the implementation of the reopening SOPs.

The District Education Officer (DEO) has said that it was mandatory for the school staff to ensure full attendance, the officials said, adding that private schools too have also been permitted to open campuses for cleanliness activities.

The government has already issued standard operating procedures (SOPs) for the schools to prevent coronavirus spread.

The middle school children would be required to keep wearing facemasks during school timings. They have been instructed to bring sanitisers, tissue papers, small soaps, and towels with them.

Schools to reopen in phases from 15th

The entry of a teacher or student without a facemask would not be allowed. The canteens will remain shut to prevent mass gathering while there is a ban on sports activities and organising assembly as well.

Smart syllabus for short academic year

The Punjab education ministry has launched ‘smart syllabus’ for all classes from nursery to matric.

The smart syllabus for all classes has also been uploaded on the website of Punjab Curriculum and Text Board which can be downloaded from there.

The measure has been taken to complete the course outline in the academic year that has been affected severely by the coronavirus lockdown. Almost six months of an academic year have been wasted and only four to six months are left in it to end.

Earlier in August, the government of Punjab had announced its decision to reduce the school curriculum by 50%.

The provincial education department had said that the syllabus would be cut down for grades one to 10. The department said the decision was taken in light of the time lost by students during the coronavirus pandemic.

Now that the smart syllabus has been launched, government teachers have been given the target to complete the smart course by February, just before final examinations in March.

The office-bearers of teachers' organisations including Basharat Iqbal, Akhyan Gul, Shafique Bhalwalia, and others said that the private institutions too had expedited educational activities after the introduction of the smart syllabus. They added that the exams could be held on time due to the measure.Published in The Express Tribune, September 22nd, 2020.
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