The Minister of State for Education, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, on Tuesday presented to the National Assembly a proposed date for the reopening of schools across the country as a post-COVID-19 measure.
He made the presentation during a meeting with the Senate Committee on Basic and Secondary Education on the ministry’s plans for pupils who have been forced to stay at home following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
While noting that government had said that schools for some categories of students would be reopened soon, Nwajiuba said that giving a tentative date would result to misrepresentation by the public.
“We said we are going to experiment with some people and these are children from exit classes.
“In the document we have provided, we have suggested how we can move our education sector forward in this pandemic period.
“We don’t want to make it known at this period so that some people will not take our proposal for guidelines for schools reopening.
“This is because people publish fake guidelines every day which I always come on air to debunk. What we have now is a proposal.
“Even if the Senate has not called us, we would have come to you to discuss with you because we have already discussed with the House of Representatives.
“The documents were presented to you so that you can criticise and make inputs as major stakeholders”.
He, however, expressed concern over the decision of Oyo State Government to reopen its primary and secondary schools in spite the current rising cases of Coronavirus infection in the country.
Nwajiuba wondered why the government of Oyo State which was currently battling with increase cases of new infections, should be eager to throw open the gates of its schools when its neighbouring states, were employing caution.
He said, “Why is Oyo State talking of reopening schools when it has just started recording increase cases of Coronavirus infection.
“Just beside Oyo is Ogun which was part of the three states under the FG’s lockdown since April is not talking about schools reopening.