ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mahmood announced on Friday that classes one to eight will resume from Feb 1 instead of Jan 25.
Speaking at a press conference after chairing a meeting to review the Covid-19 situation ahead of phase-wise reopening of educational institutions from next week, he said classes nine to 12 and universities will resume on Jan 18 (Monday) and Feb 1, respectively, as per previous decision.
The minister said the country didn’t witness a significant drop in infections from November 26, stressing the need to create a balance between the health and education sector.
He pointed out that closing academic institutions had the biggest impact on the country’s national tally of coronavirus cases. Students suffered great educational loss last year but their health is the government’s foremost priority at the same time, he added.
Later, he tweeted: “After a detailed analysis of the situation by health and education ministers we have decided to start classes for 9,10,11,12 as per announced schedule of Jan 18. Priority is being given to them because of board exams that have been postponed to May, June.”
“All other educational institutions, that is class 1 to 8 and universities will reopen on Feb 1. In the meantime we will review the situation city wise next week.”
2/2 All other educational institutions, that is class 1 to 8 and universities will reopen on Feb 1. In the meantime we will review the situation city wise next week.
— Shafqat Mahmood (@Shafqat_Mahmood) January 15, 2021
Earlier on Jan 4, a meeting of education ministers had decided to reopen educational institutions across the country in a phase-wise manner with classes nine to 12 resuming in the first phase on January 18.
Mr Mahmood had said that primary classes will resume from January 25 in the second phase whereas universities and other higher education institutions will resume on-campus sessions from Feb 1.