THE Lagos State government is working out modalities for the resumption of schools after the ongoing lockdown of some sectors in the state occasioned by the COVID-19(Coronavirus) pandemic.
It explained that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu “cannot not unilaterally” announce schools’ reopening since the contagion did not affect Lagos alone.
The government disclosed that it had already started meeting with officials of the Federal Ministry of Education to design guidelines that would be adopted before students could return to their classrooms.
The Lagos State Commissioner for Education, Folashade Adefisayo disclosed this during an online show, Covinspiration show, moderated by a United Nations Youth Ambassador, Dayo Isreal, while giving scorecard of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu led administration within the 360 days.
Adefisayo said the government ,which also plans to recruit additional 2,000 teachers, was watching the behaviour of COVID-19 to determine the next step to take
In her words: “Like other sectors already approved by the Federal Government to reopen, the state government is meeting with officials of the Federal Ministry of Education to design guidelines that must be adopted before the schools will be re-opened.
“We are watching the behaviour of the pandemic to see what happens next and we are working with the Federal government on the re-opening of the schools in the country as soon as possible.
“This is not a decision that any state can unilaterally take on its own. If we are certain that the children are safe, we will reopen the schools for learning to resume.
“We are already working with the Federal Ministry of Education and they are working with National Center for Disease Control, NCDC, on the guidelines that could be adopted when the need arises for the schools to reopen.
“After the protocol is completed and health officials assured us that the coast is clear, we will give the schools some days to adjust their premises in accordance with the guidelines on commencement of academic activities.”
On the recruitment plan of teachers, Adefisayo said: “We have concluded the recruitment of 1,000 secondary school teachers. And we are currently working on the recruitment of 2,000 teachers for public primary schools.
“We are looking at employing teachers every quarter because the rate of retirement of teachers is very high in Lagos. The administration has granted the ministry permission to replace retired teachers.
“Aside from recruitment, we have spent a lot on the training of current teachers to improve their teaching skills in classrooms. And this COVID-19 period was the time when we were able to do a lot of things in the education sector of Lagos state.”