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Posted On: 4 September 2009 01:15 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:10 pm

Parents want reopening of schools put off

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While most schools in the country are set to reopen for the new academic year immediately after the Eid Al Fitr holidays, a number of parents have called on the authorities to put off the reopening as a precaution against swine flu. The Supreme Education Council has so far not hinted of any plans to reschedule the academic year. The health and education authorities are now working together to implement a strategic plan to create awareness about swine flu among staff and students of all the schools in the country. The first phase of the plan has already been launched in private schools which have now opened after the summer holidays. The rapid spread of swine flu across the world and the fact that a number of children will be returning after Ramadan holidays have caused concern among a major section of parents. Many fear that crowding in schools can trigger the spread of the disease among children, who are found to be more vulnerable to the H1N1 virus. A survey among parents conducted by Al Sharq daily found that about 90 percent of the respondents were in favour of postponing the reopening of schools. “The Supreme Education Council should put off the re-opening of schools until a solution is in place to protect our children from swine flu,” said Saad Saleem, a mother. “The health and education authorities should together decide if it is necessary to reopen the schools as scheduled. If the disease goes out of control, it will have grave consequences,” warned Ghadeera Mohammed, another parent. Meanwhile, medical experts have warned the schools against putting too many children in one classroom since it can aggravate the risk. Schools have also been urged to appoint health supervisors to watch the condition of each student. The strategic plan for school prepared by the Supreme Council of Health seeks to educate students and the staff about the preventive measures against swine flu. Brochures have been prepared telling children to take precautions if they develop flu-like symptoms.