Following the surge in Covid-19 positive cases, the Sindh government on Friday announced to keep the educational institutions closed till August 30.

In a short statement issued by the Sindh Information Department, the Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has said that schools won’t be reopened from August 23. In this week, teachers, staff, and parents should be vaccinated. “It has been decided to reopen universities, colleges, and schools after 10 days. They would be opened from August 30”, he said.

However, after the Sindh government’s announcement about the closure of educational intuitions, the All Private Schools Management Association Sindh convened an emergency meeting chaired by APSMAS chairman, Syed Tariq Shah.

The association in its press statement expressed concerns over the provincial government announcement: “If the government does not restore education from August 23, the private education sector would shift education system to outdoor schooling. Today, the APSMAS is announcing the Education Rescue Movement (Taleem Bachao Tehreek) across the province”.

The statement reads: “Educational institutions are functioning all over the country apart from Sindh. Why only children of Sindh are deprived of education, the APSMAS leaders asked. They demanded that those schools of which staffers and teachers have got 100 percent vaccination should be reopened from August 23 as per the decision taken in the meeting of the School Education and Literacy Department’s Steering Committee this week.”

In the meeting, the health minister had also given permission to open schools from August 23. Educational institutions should be opened with 50% attendance, 100 percent vaccination, and strict compliance of Covid-19 SOPs. During the meeting, the members had also discussed the dropout ratio. It was revealed that around 600000 children have dropped out of government schools during the lockdown.

Private schools have completed 95% vaccination while this ratio is about 80% for public schools. Currently, one million new children have not been able to attend school for the past two years. The provincial government is continuously disrupting education for the third consecutive year.

Author

Arshad Yousafzai is a Karachi-based journalist covering Education and Human Rights. He can be reached on Twitter @Arshadyousafzay

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