Ogun, FCT direct schools to resume January 18, Niger January 24, Edo February 1


The Government of Ogun State has directed all primary, secondary, as well as Government Science and Technical Colleges across the state to resume academic activities on Monday, January 18.
Prof. Abayomi Arigbabu, the Commissioner for Ministry of Education, Science and Technology,  gave the directive in a statement on Friday  in Abeokuta.
Arigbabu appealed to parents, guardians, teachers, school administrators and other stakeholders, to ensure full compliance with all Coronavirus (COVID-19) protocols.
According to  the commissioner, it is compulsory for  all learners, teachers and non-teaching staff, to wear face masks at all times, as well as the use of infrared thermometer for temperature check.
He further explained that regular washing of hands with soap and water, use of hand sanitisers, observing social and physical distancing, should be maintained, while discouraging large gatherings such as assembly.
The commissioner also instructed that isolation rooms, health clinic/bay already created should be functional and regularly maintained.
Also, the FCT Education Secretariat has directed all schools to resume on Monday, January 18, following the announcement by the Federal Ministry of Education on maintaining the resumption date.
Malam Leramoh Abdulrazaq, Acting Secretary and Director, Administration and Finance, issued the directive at a stakeholders meeting on Friday in Abuja.
Abdulrazaq urged heads of schools to ensure total compliance with COVID-19 protocols, school resumption guidelines and checklist earlier released for FCT schools.
“The FCT Education Secretariat has directed all Schools in FCT to resume accordingly,” he said.
He noted that the the Federal Ministry of Education had maintainef the resumption date of Jan. 18, after a comprehensive appraisal of the situation and extensive consultations with relevant stakeholders.
Abdulrazaq said that the education management would always place the safety of the staff members and students as priority as they returned to their various schools for the new academic session.
He added that the secretariat had gone ahead also to ensure neccessary modalities were worked out for safe resumption amidst the second wave of COVID-19.
Abdulrazaq noted that in the wake of the October 2020 resumption, after the long periods of lockdown,the FCT Administration made adequate provision for all that was needed for safe re-opening.
He also said that schools authorities were directed to leave no stone unturned to ensure staff members and students complied to all laid down rules and regulations.
According to him, schools are enjoined to make use of all items provided already and close every gaps for the beginning of full academic activities.
He said arrangements were concluded for regular school monitoring and inspection by the Department of Quality Assurance and other Monitoring units of the various boards under the education secretariat.
Abdulrazaq, therefore, appealed to everyone not to toy with their health and security but play their roles in complementing and sustaining all the safety measures put in place by the FCT Administration.
He stated that the secretariat would intensify efforts to ensure no form of violation of rules in the pursuit of safety for all while the education standard in FCT would not be compromised.
Meanwhile, Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has said that schools in the state will remain closed until  February 1, as the state grapples with the second wave of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Obaseki stated this at a news conference on Friday in Benin, as most states across the federation gear up to reopen schools on January 18.
”We have decided that schools will not reopen for now; this situation will be reviewed by February 1.
”We will like our own schools to reopen on February 1, depending on the situation at that point in time.
“Between now and that time, we will be going round to make sure that these schools have running water.
“We want to ensure spacing for the children are in place and we want to ensure that they have temperature checks at the entrance of each school.
“Each classroom should not hold more than 30 per cent of the students; all of that is being  worked out by the Ministry of Education and the Edo State Universal Basic Education Board (EDOSUBEB).
“Within the next two weeks, we should be able to finalise plans to allow children go back to school.
“In the meantime, we will reactivate EdoBest at home. You will recall that during the first wave, we were able to creat over 9,000 virtual classrooms for these children to learn,” Obaseki said.
The governor expressed hope that the children would not stay at home longer than was expected.
He said that there was the possibility of introducing break after every hour to enable students to go out and get fresh air.
“We will not relocate markets as we did in the first time. We will work with market associations to ensure that we continue fumigation of the markets on an ongoing basis.
“All markets and shops must ensure they have running water, soaps and hand sanitiser at the entrance. We are working on alternative opening days for stores in the markets.
“We will introduce no-face-mask, no-entry policy in every market and store in Edo.
“Anybody found not complying with these protocols will be subjected to community service, no matter how highly placed, and he or she will become an ex convict.
“We have also seen 10 and a half increase in the number of older people who are infected with the virus.
”Research has also shown that more children and youths are infected by this virus at this point in time.
“As at yesterday, we had 46 new cases, bringing the total number to 3,189 confirmed cases,” he stated.
According to him, in the last 46 days, Edo has recorded 493 new cases, 214 recovery and 12 deaths.
He said that the non compliance to COVID-19 safety protocols had been largely responsible to the wide spread during the second wave.
The governor noted that in view of that, 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew had been reactivated in the state, adding that the state had the logistics and human capacity to respond to the pandemic.
He appealed to all worship centres to ensure that children under 12 and the elderly were not allowed to attend services, following the  prevalence of the disease.
“Religious gathering should not last for more than one hour. Where there are more than one service, there should be an hour interval to allow for decontamination.
“Event centres should not admit more than 30 per cent of their capacity, while hotels should shut down their swimming pools and restaurant operators should encourage take away,” he said.
Speaking during the news conference, the state Epidemiologist, Dr Greg Oko-Oboh, called on anybody with fever to go to the nearest center for screening.
Also speaking, the Deputy Governor, Mr Philip Shaibu, called on passengers to put on their face masks before boarding vehicles.
He said that failure to do so would attract sanctions to both the drivers and the passengers.
Also, Niger State Government has directed basic and secondary schools to resume classes on January 24, for the first term of 2020/2021 academic session.
Hajiya Hannatu Saliu, Commissioner for Education, who made the disclosure in a statement on Friday in Minna, said the government was being cautious, hence, the need for an additional one week to the earlier resumption date.
According to her, boarding schools students would resume on January 24, while day schools are to resume on January 25 for first term 2020/2021 academic session.
The Federal Government had slated January 18 for schools resumption.
She said that the decision was taken after consultation with different stakeholders.
Salihu said the additional one week was to enable all schools to put the necessary protective measures in place, while parents, students and pupils make provisions to comply with COVID 19 protocols in full.
According to her, on resumption, principals, teachers and students must ensure full compliance with the following standard of COVID 19 protocols.
She mentioned such protocols to include: maintaining physical distancing by avoiding oversized classes and overcrowded areas, no assemblies, visiting days or large gathering of any kind.
Salihu said that there would be proper wearing of face mask at all times within and outside the school by all principals, teachers, parents, students, pupils and others.
She said schools would adhere to sanitation, constant washing and/or sanitising of hands.
The commissioner noted that schools would be carrying out temperature checks for all those entering their premises and periodically within the school.
She said activating and deploying in full all COVID 19 protocols put in place during the first wave of the pandemic such as drop and pick-up points and provision of holding rooms on resumption.
Salihu said that the ministry had instituted the mechanism for strict and continuous monitoring of compliance with COVID-19 protocols and advised stakeholders, principals, head teachers, teachers and workers to ensure full compliance.
She said the ministry would continue to ensure the safety of students and all working in the schools.


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