Schools in Shenzhen will not reopen until the epidemic outbreak has ended, according to an official with the Shenzhen Municipal Education Bureau on a Shenzhen Radio Station program yesterday.
On the program, Chen Qiu-ming, director of the bureau, said the schedule of school re-openings is undecided, and the safety of teachers and students is the top priority.
“If schools reopen, the education system needs 3 million masks, and children, especially those in lower grades, won’t like to wear them for long,” said Chen, elaborating on the reasons why schools will reopen only when authorities can ensure 100 percent safety.
Shenzhen high schools started online teaching two weeks ago, and junior schools have offered online courses for one week. Chen said the education authority is now deliberating whether to allow schools to start new lessons online as the epidemic continues.
Chen said a survey will be conducted on the issue.
Chen showed concerns about using summer holidays to make up the lessons due to hot weather and the fact that many private schools in Shenzhen don’t have air conditioning.
Chen also said the city’s decisions on high school entrance arrangements and schedules will depend on the epidemic situation. For school children, parents can apply online for school places starting April 20.
In another development, the Guangdong Provincial Education Department issued a notice yesterday requiring online teaching for students in colleges, universities, middle schools and primary schools starting from March 2 and forbidding students from returning to schools. School reopenings will be determined according to the epidemic situation, according to the authority.
At a news conference yesterday, the Hong Kong Education Authority postponed school re-openings from March 16 to April 20. No schools will be allowed to reopen before April 20.