BY Joseph Erunke
THE Federal Government has given school owners in the country up to July 29, 2020, to meet specific guidelines towards the reopening of schools at a date to be announced in due course.
This came as it had settled with four countries on a new date for the suspended West African Examinations Council, WAEC.
Minister of State for Education, Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, who stated this, Friday, in Abuja, said the ministry, having consulted widely, has in collaboration with Federal Ministry of Health, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, (NCDC), the Education in Emergencies Working Group, developed and circulated guidelines for the reopening of schools.
The minister, according to a statement, Friday, by the Director of Information in the Ministry, Bem Goong, “school owners are to prepare and comply with the guidelines.
“Nwajuiba said schools are to undertake self-assessment and send feedback to state ministries of education, not later than 29 July 2020, “the statement quoted him as saying.
He said consultations with relevant stakeholders will be held to review the situation and decide on a specific date for reopening or otherwise.
The minister further said, having taken the painful but necessary decision not to reopen schools without necessary preparations to ensure the safety of students and teachers, the Federal Ministry of Education has continued consultations with stakeholders, and a mechanism to assess and monitor compliance shall be put in place.
According to him, “Since Tuesday last week, we have consulted widely with stakeholders in the sector, including Commissioners of Education in all the states of the federation, the Association of Private School Owners of Nigeria,(APSON), National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools,(NAPPS), Provosts of Colleges of Education, Rectors of Polytechnics, Vice-Chancellors of universities, some state governors, and development partners.”
Commenting on WAEC, Nwajuiba said, “We met with WAEC on Monday and have agreed to further consult with four other countries on new examination date.”
“We appreciate the concern shown by all stakeholders and note the divergent views expressed on the matter.
“Parents should be rest assured that the safety of our students and teachers is paramount as we work assiduously towards the speedy reopening of our schools for the exit classes to take external examinations,” he added.