President Akufo-Addo yesterday in his 13th televised nation’s address said a COVID-19 sensitization programme will be today organized for all headteachers and their staff through the District Directors of Education and the District Directors of Health
He explained that the COVID-19 sensitization programme will ensure that the do’s and don’ts of the protocols are clearly spelled out for the teachers for onward transmission to the students.
Akufo-Addo reopening school for final year Junior high school (JHS) students since the long school closure on March 16 said all form 3 students in the 17,439 Junior high school across the country will return to school to prepare and sit for the forthcoming BECE for school candidates, 2020.
He disclosed that 750,000 persons, comprising 523,000 BECE candidates, 218,000 teaching and non-teaching staff, and invigilators, are expected to resume school in the course of the week.
To ensure a safe reopening of school reopening, he said the central government has put adequate measures in place to safeguard the lives of these prospective students, and all other personnel.
Aside from the fumigation and disinfection of all Junior High schools in the country, the government has additionally procured and distributed 45,000 veronica buckets, 90,000 gallons of liquid soap, 45,000 thermometer guns, 90,000 rolls of tissue paper, 750,000 pieces of 200mils sanitizers, and 2.2 million reusable facemasks.
According to the Akufo-Addo, each person (student, teaching and non-teaching staff) will be equipped with 3 washable reusable face masks. He indicated that two face masks will be provided tomorrow and the last one within the next two weeks.
Akufo-Addo said the JHS 3 students will spend 11 weeks of preparation and revision in school before writing the Basic Education Certificate Examination in the 12 weeks.
He added that there will be no more than 30 students in a class, and there will be a reduced school day, with students reporting to school at 9 am and closing at 1 pm.
Following the reduction in school hours, Akufo-Addo said no breaks outside the classroom will be allowed, adding that assemblies and sporting events are banned, and the use by outsiders of school premises for religious and other activities will not be permitted.
He furthered that each basic school has been mapped to a health facility, and care will be provided to the sick in these health facilities by nurses assigned to these schools.
The President gave assurance that the central government will not the lives of the 750,000 students, teaching and non teaching staff returning to school at risk.
He added that “We have made all the required provisions to protect them whilst in school”.
“All must adhere strictly to enhanced personal hygiene and social distancing protocols, regularly wash their hands with soap under running water, refrain from shaking hands and hugging, and wear masks to protect themselves and others”, Akufo-Addo urged.