Schools with less than 100 to begin this month – Minister

G.L. Peiris

Education Minister Prof.G.L.Peiris said they hope to launch a practical programme to reopen schools with less than 100 children in July as an initial step.

The reopening would be done in line with the recommendations of the health sector, Minister Peiris told at a press briefing held at the Education Ministry in Battaramulla yesterday (2).

He further said that in order to facilitate the school openings, based on a discussion with President Gotabaya Rajapaksa, it was decided to implement a mandatory vaccination programme for all teachers.

It is expected to open 2,962 schools in July comprising 1,439 schools with less than 50 students, and 1,523 schools with between 51to 100 students based on health recommendations while other schools will be re-opened as per a proper plan. Based on this plan, as a first step all teachers, officials and principals would be vaccinated, to build confidence among the parents in sending their children to school.

He said that they plan to establish 2,000 centres countrywide in order to provide internet facilities for children who do not have access to such facilities. The Mahindodya labs, schools, temples and community centres would be utilised for this purpose.

The Education Minister noted that District Development Committee Chairmen, Zonal Directors as well as Principals have identified 2,096 such centres and it is expected to open them on July 5.

State Minister Susil Premajayantha said provisions have already been sent to the provincial education authorities to provide printed lessons, notes and workbooks to children at provincial level through their schools. He also said that education is also provided to students through the Guru Gedara programme and through the Eye and Nethra Channels from 4.00 pm to 11.00 pm based on the grades and subjects.

The State Minister noted that it is also expected to launch a separate satellite channel for each Grade within a short period using experienced teachers for live classroom sessions.

A home based education system for children, with priority given to Grade 5, Grade 11 and Advanced Level classes will also be initiated.In areas where there are issues with transport facilities for children to reach the study centres that are scheduled to be set up in remote areas, it is expected to provide such facilities in consultation with the SLTB, he said, adding that medical officers, public health inspectors and principals have been informed of this.

(Source: Daily News)