Government has directed all grade 7,9,10,11 and 12 pupils for boarding and day schools to open on August 5, 2021, while universities, colleges and all other higher learning institutions will continue with online learning.
Information and Broadcasting Services Permanent Secretary Amos Malupenga, said this decision will enable exam classes to adequately prepare for their final examinations and may be revisited depending on the evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Mr. Malupenga was speaking in Lusaka today, during a joint press briefing alongside his counterparts Dr. Kennedy Malama, Jobbicks Kalumba and Stephen Mwansa from the Ministry of General Education, Ministry of Health-Technical Services, and The office of the Vice President, respectively.
“All school Head Teachers are therefore directed to provide leadership so that the situation in the schools that shall open, will help Government to make decisions on the remaining grades,” he said.
Mr. Malupenga added that opening of the remaining classes will be based on the inspections and certification by the Ministries of General Education and Health, in conjunction with the Disaster Management and Mitigation Unit (DMMU).
And Ministry of General Education Permanent Secretary Dr. Jobbicks Kalumba said he is happy that government has allowed learners to go back to school and continue with their lessons.
He explained that it has not been an easy journey due to the Covid-19 pandemic but has assured that teachers across the nation will do their best to ensure learners catch up with the lost hours.
Speaking during the same briefing, Permanent Secretary in Charge of Administration at the Office of the Vice President, Stephen Mwansa said all boarding schools will be supported with food supplies to minimize pressure on their capacities, as well as support families that may be challenged.
“All schools will be assisted with face masks and hand sanitizers as well as soap and other cleaning materials. No school will be left out. This is to ensure that safety of the children is assured,” he added.
Mr. Mwansa further announced that all schools will be fumigated in readiness for opening and has assured parents to take comfort in knowing that Government is doing the best it can to ensure safety of learners.
Meanwhile, Ministry of Health Technical Services Permanent Secretary Dr. Kennedy Malama, said members of the public must not drop their guard at individual, family and country level despite the optimistic outlook, as 73% of admitted patients are currently still on oxygen therapy.
Dr. Malama has reiterated the need to follow the five golden rules for preventing the spread of Covid-19 as well as vaccination in fighting the global pandemic.