Last Updated at: 2020-06-11 17:12:41
On Saturday, President Uhuru Kenyatta directed the Education Ministry to consult with the Health experts so as to come up with a new calendar by mid-August.
President Uhuru Kenyatta said the reopening will be gradual but remained silent on the fate of the exams.
“Following stakeholder’s consultations in the education sector – the Ministry of Education jointly with the Ministry of Health will issue and publicize guidelines on a gradual and progressive return to normalcy in the education sector by the Third Term, from 1st September 2020,” the president said in an address from State House.
“I have applied my mind to the different scenarios presented by our experts. And I have reconciled myself to the fact that to ‘open’ or not to ‘open’ is not a dilemma between a right and a wrong. It is a dilemma between two rights,” he added.
The president’s instructions come a day after Education Cabinet Secretary George Magoha said the Ministry would not rush to re-open schools at a time when the coronavirus is still out of control.
“The pandemic is still spiking. Nobody has re-opened schools when the disease is still spiking. South Korea and Israel did everything right, re-opened schools and were forced to close when the disease started killing students,” Magoha said.
In March 15, the government closed all schools in a bid to avert the unrestrained spread of COVID-19.
Since then Kenya has so far reported a total of 2,600, including 83 fatalities Covid-19 cases.
The president however extended curfew by another 30 days but shifted to 9pm-4am from the previous 7pm-5am to allow Kenyans the “opportunity to enjoy a full-day’s work”.
“The question we must all ponder together is whether we have met these three thresholds in order to lift the restrictions. Have the cases of infections taken a downward turn? The answer is definitely no. We are seeing an increase. Have we met the second minimum of prepared health systems with isolation? Again, as I said, the answer is no,” Kenyatta said.
“Some, including myself, wanted to open up now. That was, and is still my desire. I want to open up at the earliest opportunity and get the economy going. More so, as Kenya was ranked the third largest economy in Sub-Sahara Africa this week.” Kenyatta added.
The Ministries of Education and Health are expected to issue and publicise guidelines on a gradual and progressive return to normalcy in the education sector.
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