Reopening of education institutions

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THE government has announced reopening of educational institutions in phases from 18th January. These were shut down in the first week of November after the second wave of Covid 19 started taking a heavy toll in the country. Addressing a news conference on Monday, Education Minister Shafqat Mahmood said the decision has been taken in consultation with all the provinces and that the board examinations will be held in May and June.
The education sector indeed is amongst the worst affected by the breakout of pandemic. As a result of this, exams of many classes could not be held last year. Though online classes were started, yet it could not be a substitute to class room learning. In this backdrop, the government has taken the right decision as the institutions cannot be kept closed for an indefinite period. However, it must be understood that the threat is not over yet. The closure of schools indeed helped the authorities concerned better tackle with the second wave of the contagion. As the schools are now reopening, it must be ensured that the health guidelines are fully complied with by them. The local administration must monitor that the institutions fully adhere to the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) as no compromise can be made on the health and life of the children. The government is working to procure Anti Covid vaccine in the first quarter of current year. Apart from the health workers, it must be ensured that the vaccine is administered to the children and staff of educational institutions free of cost and on priority basis. We cannot revert back to the closure of the institutions as it will amount to the total debacle of the education sector. Already our millions of children are out of school and the closure of schools has only drifted the attention of our children away from the studies. Responsibility rests with the teachers as well as parents to properly guide their children about the importance of education as a gateway to the future.