Ministries discuss preparations for school reopening plans

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Discussion between Ministry of Education and Ministry of Health and Sports is in progress to prepare for school reopening plans depending on the situation of COVID-19 outbreak.  Photo : MNA

The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Health and Sports held a coordination meeting on preparations for reopening schools depending on the COVID-19 situation yesterday.
Union Minister for Education Dr Myo Thein Gyi, Union Minister for Health and Sports Dr Myint Htwe, the deputy minister, the permanent secretary, directors-general, deputy directors-general, directors and other officials attended the meeting.
Union Minister Dr Myo Thein Gyi said that the 2020 matriculation examination was successfully held in March before the country reported its first case of COVID-19 and the first semester exams of all universities were postponed in accordance with the decision of education officials when the first case occurred on 23 March 2020.
He also talked about the announcement of matriculation exam results in July as the answer papers were checked in May and June in accordance with the instructions of the Ministry of Health and Sports and preparations for announcing the exam marks and university application processes.
He also said the Ministry of Education established Myanmar Digital Education Platform (MDEP) and arranged 5-day online and 5-day classroom learning system for all teachers using MDEP for new curriculums of Grade-4, 7 and 10 with the permission of National-Level Central Committee on Prevention, Control and Treatment of COVID-19. He also talked about online courses for university level.
He then added a total of 6,526 high schools out of 7,173 schools were reopened in accordance with the health guidelines from 21 July to 27 August based on the 80 facts in the assessment of Ministry of Union Government Office, Ministry of Health and Sports, Ministry of Education, parents and ethnic people. All the schools were closed on 28 August due to the high local transmission rate.
He also discussed broadcasting of school curriculums of primary schools through TV channels such as Myanmar Education Channel and MRTV including FM Radio twice a day, arrangements to download the school curriculums and digital lessons on MDEP, technical and vocational training and management system for teachers of higher education and training programmes for new syllabus of Grade 6, 9 and 11.
He then highlighted the cooperation work for distribution of university application forms for the students who passed the 2020 matriculation examination and the application processes for 2021 matriculation exam.
There are 70 government technical high schools, and the Department of Technical and Vocational Education and Training launched Learning Management System (LMS) via MDEP on 17 December. He also discussed exam results from universities of distance education, arrangements for admission and teaching aids, trainings for university teachers, compiling of digital lessons, online computer courses, online law courses, online business management courses, online English classes and working for the establishment of National Open University.
He also stressed the cooperation works between the Ministry of Education and other officials of relevant departments and ethic people in conducting assessment on 50,529 primary, middle and high schools (including monastic and private schools), 70 GTHS, 25 Education Degree Colleges, 2 PPTT and Education University, 15 universities including the University of Computer Sciences, Technological Universities and the University of Yangon, Arts and Science Universities and Distance Universities to be ready to reopen. Union Minister Dr Myint Htwe then said the reopening of schools and universities depends on the obeying of COVID-19 health rules and the people should not be careless although the infection rate declines in the country. All the parents must follow the COVID-19 health rules to reopen the schools across the nation for the children and youths not to lose their rights to learn.
The ministry will conduct an assessment to reopen the schools step by step depending on the infection rate and population with the permission of COVID-19 committee. He also discussed the spread of SARS-CoV-2 in the UK and European countries, lab tests of Medical Research Department of Mandalay Region, duty assignment for a checklist when the schools are reopened and further support of the ministry in the future.
Union Minister Dr Myint Htwe and Union Minister Dr Myo Thein Gyi concluded the meeting by saying the facts such as efforts to be made to be “COVD-19 free schools”, decisions to be made timely depending on the situation rather than procedure, reforms based on the latest findings and cooperation works between the two ministries to make preparations to get ready for school reopening.—MNA (Translated by Khine Thazin Han)

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