Starting on July 6, schools have slowly started to reopen in the country. Classes will first reopen for grade 12 students and will be followed by grades 7 and 10 after two weeks of observation and adaptation.
To prepare for school reopening – and ensure the safety of students, teachers and education officials – GPE is supporting the government to create a school reopening framework and learning catch-up plans. In parallel, GPE will also support the launch of a communication campaign to encourage students to go back to school.
With support from UNICEF and other partners, the Ministry of Education and Training has started to implement the school reopening plan by training over 850 staff, teachers and stakeholders.
Several partners have been engaged in supporting sanitation and hygiene activities in school and guarantee that water, soap, hand washing facilities and hand sanitizers are available when schools reopen.
Additionally, students and staff will be screened via temperature checkpoints prior to entering school; to combat a possible spread, isolation rooms have already been identified within facilities.
Despite this rapid response, challenges remain. Alternative ways of learning are not available to all children: children from the poorest households who don’t have access to technology like TV and radio are excluded from the program, which also only targets students completing classes.
Nonetheless there have been reports of out-of-school adolescents and young adults following the lessons, allowing them access to learning possibly for the first time, a positive spin-off of the remote learning program.