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Bangladesh lays out plan for school return amid pandemic

  • Staff Correspondent,
    Published: 2021-08-27 03:34:29 BdST

The government has drawn out a plan to reopen educational institutions amid the coronavirus pandemic in a high-level meeting. 

Chaired by Education Minister Dipu Moni, the meeting agreed on four steps to restart in-person classes and exams after extending the shutdown of the institutions to Sept 11.

The government will seek expert advice from the National Technical Advisory Committee on COVID-19 to determine when to reopen the institutions, the education ministry said in a statement.

Officials had earlier said they would wait until the daily infection rate dropped below 5 percent of sample tests for the restart following international standards.

But considering the impact of the long shutdown on the students’ physical and mental health, the government may now allow in-person classes and exams following the expert committee’s advice even if daily case positivity rate remains slightly above 5 percent.

Officials will sit with the expert panel next week.

The ministries of education, and primary and mass education will make checklists, based on their school-reopening plan, with the help of the Directorate General of Health Services within a week.   

The authorities will send a list of university students who have not registered for vaccination to the DGHS within seven days.

They will ask the Election Commission to fast-track the work to issue national ID cards to students above 18 years old.

Vaccination centres will be set up at the educational institutions for the inoculation of eligible students, teachers and staff who have not received a dose of the vaccine.