PAKISTAN. Karachi. Schools and colleges have reopened across Pakistan and the country has recorded 752 new COVID-19 cases along with nine deaths. According to the National Command and Operation Center’s (NCOC) report, COVID-19 cases have increased drastically.
COVID-19 cases force colleges to close
The Institutes of Business Administration (IBA) Karachi campus opened this week, but after having 2 positive cases, they move towards lockdown once again.
Sindh Health Department discloses that 8 employees from different colleges in the Matiari District tested positive for COVID-19. Two professors and a senior clerk of a private college are among the infected people.
16 positive cases from single institute in Islamabad
An educational institute in Islamabad also closed after having 16 NCOC reported positive cases. In the span of only three days, the Punjab primary and secondary health care department confirmed 34 positive COVID-19 cases.
16 educational institutes sealed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
On Thursday, the government shared that the rise of COVID-19 cases in Pakistan led to 16 educational institutions going into lockdown in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), one in Islamabad and five in Azad Jammu Kashmir.
Shaukat Yousafzai, KP Minister of Labour, dropped a hint on Friday about reviewing the decision to reopen educational institutions. He added, ‘‘It has been decided to reopen the educational institutions to observe the rate of COVID-19 spread”. The government will take strict actions against the institutions in the violation of standard operating procedure (SOP) provided by government.” He continued, “Chief Minister KP Mahmood Khan himself will visit schools to check the arrangements,” Yousafzai warns the institutions that the government will seal the schools for 15-30 days if any institute tries to violate the standard SOP’s.
Reopening of schools delayed in Sindh by Education Minister
Saeed Ghani, the Sindh Education Minister, delayed the opening of schools on Friday for 6th, 7th and 8th grade, which was previously scheduled for 21 September. This decision held after detecting COVID-19 in 88 school teachers, according to the Education Department of Sindh.
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The lack of following SOP’s at schools resulted in the delay, the Education Minister said, “We sealed the four schools of these, three were probably not registered.”
Federal Minister of Education Shafqat Mehmood shares national response
“Our timetable is not yet change,” said Shafqat Mahmood, the Federal Minister of Education, ”before deciding to postpone the second phase, Sindh Minister Saeed Ghani should have taken us into confidence.” The Federal Education Minister said that Sindh made a decision on their own without consulting them.
The COVID-19 cases in Pakistan have increased to 304,386, while the number of fatalities has jumped to 6,408.