Tuesday, 26 January 2021

NO DATE FOR SCHOOLS OPENING : GOVT

 THE Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education has said there is no date yet for the opening of schools, while the Zimbabwe Schools Examinations Council (Zimsec) says there will be no public exam resits as there are no papers that leaked.

Schools were supposed to open on January 4, but an increase in cases during the festive season resulted in the deferment of the start of the new school term.

In a statement, the Education Ministry said an announcement on the opening of schools will be done in due course. It dismissed social media reports claiming that schools will open on February 15.

“The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education takes this opportunity to advise its valued learners, parents, guardians, teachers and other stakeholders, that contrary to that fake social media report, the 2021 School Calendar for all primary and secondary schools will be announced in due course, hence schools remain closed until an official announcement is made through the ministry’s usual official methods of communication,” the statement reads.

“Schools remain closed until an official announcement is made through the ministry’s usual official methods of communication.” The ministry said it reinforces the wearing of face masks, physical distancing as well as handwashing to prevent the spread of Covid-19 in all schools as preparations continue for the safe opening of schools and the accelerated implementation of teaching and learning activities.

Last year, a number of schools recorded Covid-19 cases and John Tallach secondary school in Ntabazinduna reported nearly 200 cases.

The Education Ministry also said it remains committed to the provision of “quality, relevant, equitable, inclusive and wholesome education” for all Zimbabweans and any communication will be cascaded through the proper channels and structures.

Meanwhile, Zimsec has said pupils will not resit of the Ordinary Level English and Mathematics examination as papers for the two subjects had not leaked as claimed on social media.

A fake message circulating on WhatsApp claimed that there would be a re-sit for the papers on a date to be announced in February after the last paper is written. Zimsec public relations officer, Ms Nicky Dlamini said there was no leakage of any paper in the just ended examinations.

She said that the examination board or the Education Ministry do not communicate via WhatsApp or any form of social media but through formal means.

Ms Dlamini said despite the outbreak of Covid-19, public examinations were conducted in a safe environment for both the candidates and invigilators.

She said pupils who caught the virus measures were put in place for them to write while in isolation and these measures worked out for the best. “Under the prevailing global circumstances seen and unforeseen, the examinations have run so far to the best of our ability.

Students diagnosed with Covid-19 wrote their examinations while in quarantine. There are standing regulations for such cases therefore there was no prejudice to the pupil or exams,” she added.

Ms Dlamini said the marking of the 2020 Grade Seven public examinations has just been concluded and results should be expected early next month.  Chronicle

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