Ugandan government orders phased reopening of schools

Students in school uniform walking down a dirt road to Kibale, Kibale District, Uganda.

Uganda on Monday approved the reopening of schools and institutions of higher learning for non-candidate classes in a staggered manner subject to adherence to health regulations, an official government notice said.

FILE PHOTO: Students in school uniform walking down a dirt road to Kibale, Kibale District, Uganda. (Getty Images)

The notice, which exempted pre-primary learners, said all students will be required to wear face masks in addition to laying out a set of measures to be implemented for the safe reopening.

Some of the measures include: conducting an awareness campaign for parents and learners prior to the reopening, development of school health information systems and training of teachers on health safety regulations.

“The leadership of the Ministries of Education and Sports and Health will undertake a countrywide tour of schools and institutions to ascertain their preparedness to reopen for non-candidate classes,” the notice read in part.

In October last year, Uganda reopened candidate classes after seven months of closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The government also approved an order for 18 million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine from India.

“The Ministry of Health working together with the National Medical Stores has placed an order of eighteen million doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine from the Serum Institute of India which will be used to vaccinate persons from the age of 50 years and above, persons with underlying health conditions, health workers, security personnel, teachers among other essential social service providers,” the statement said.

The statement added that each person will get the second dose of the vaccine after 28 days.

As of February 1, Uganda has reported 39,606 confirmed cases and 325 deaths.