Sindh decides against early closure of schools

Final decision by federal, provincial education ministers to be taken on Nov 23

The Sindh Education Department on Saturday decided against the early closure of educational institutions in the province as the second wave of the pandemic sweeps across the country.

Chairing a meeting of the provincial education steering committee, members were informed by Education Minister Saeed Ghani of recommendations regarding early school closure. 

The meeting was attended by Sindh Education Secretary Ahmed Bakhsh Narejo, Secretary Colleges Sindh Syed Baqir Naqvi, senior officials of the education department and officials of private school associations.

The meeting also discussed the matter of winter breaks in schools. Ghani said no final decision was taken in the last meeting chaired by the federal minister of education.

Sources claim it was decided not to close educational institutions for winter break this year. The meeting further decided to further tighten Covid-19 related SOPs in schools and the option to conduct classes online is available for all educational institutions. 

In an earlier meeting of the Inter-Provincial Education Ministers' Conference (IPEMC), provincial education ministers opposed the immediate closure of educational institutions.

Keeping the current situation in mind, consultations were held in regards to the early closure of schools for winter vacations and extending the break. The forum proposed commencing winter break from November and continuing it till January.

However, a consensus could not be achieved and the participants of the forum decided to review the situation again November 23.

On November 5, the Ministry of Federal Education and Professional Training decided not to close educational institutions amid rising coronavirus cases across the country.

Participants had agreed then that there was no need to close educational institutions in the current situation, whereas no final decision could be made to start the academic year from August instead of April.

The federal minister had said that the advisory of the Ministry of Health was their priority and that educational activities would continue until advised otherwise.

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