Uganda to reopen schools next month after two years of closure

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

The Ugandan government announced on Wednesday that schools will reopen early next month after about two years of closure due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Janet Kataha Museveni, minister of education and sports said pre-primary, primary, and secondary schools shall re-open on January 10, 2022.

Museveni urged schools against the arbitrary increase of school charges, noting that school administrators need to know that the learners are coming from families that have also been facing a tough time.

She said while the pandemic has impacted the education sector in many challenging ways, the government has ensured continuity of learning through the provision of home-study materials and through radio and television.

As the year comes to an end, the minister said many learners were able to complete their studies amidst the pandemic.

Ministry of education figures show 1.1 million learners completed Primary Seven, Senior Four, and Senior Six levels. Many learners at universities and tertiary institutions have graduated.

Uganda closed schools after some learners tested positive for COVID-19. The government argued that keeping schools open would expose the caretakers of the learners to the deadly virus.

After the closure of the schools, the government embarked on the vaccination of teachers.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni recently announced that the country would fully reopen the economy next month whether the targeted 5 million people are vaccinated or not.

Ministry of Health figures as of Dec. 13 show that over 7.8 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccines have been administered since the exercise started in March.