Monday, January 17

Uganda: schools reopen after almost two years of closure

A school class in Mpondwe, southwestern Uganda, August 14, 2019 ISAAC KASAMANI

Some 15 million young Ugandans returned to school on Monday, with the reopening of schools closed for almost two years due to the coronavirus epidemic.

Ugandan Education Minister John Muyingo said all students would resume classes one class above where they left off in March 2020, when the Covid pandemic swept across the world.

“Very strict protocols have been put in place in all schools across the country to ensure the safe return of children to class,” the minister told AFP.

Particular attention will be paid to private schools to ensure that they do not claim higher tuition fees than those charged before the closure, he added.

Many children’s rights organizations have denounced this 83-week closure of schools, the longest on record in the world.

“This must never happen again. We must keep schools open for all children, everywhere,” Unicef, the United Nations children’s agency, said on Twitter.

The NGO Save the Children deplored the delay in the school curriculum by the children and warned that there might be many children who would not return to school without an intervention from the authorities in support of teachers.

Uganda has recorded a total of 153,762 Covid-19 cases for 3,339 deaths, according to official figures as of January 7.

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