Not a holiday, revise courses and do your homework, Shafqat Mahmood tells students

Federal education minister says schools had to be closed down as COVID-19 was increasing fast

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Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mahmood speaks during a press conference in Islamabad. Photo: file

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s educational institutions had to be closed down because coronavirus infections were rising very fast, Federal education Minister Shafqat Mahmood tweeted Tuesday morning.

He said it was done with a heavy heart. “I request all students to use this time not as a holiday but to revise their courses, do homework,” he said.

The federal education minister asked students to continue with their studies “as much as possible”.

Mahmood had made similar remarks last week while talking to Geo Pakistan. He had said the decision to close down educational institutes was taken due to non-compliance with government-issued coronavirus SOPs.

Read more: Schools shut because coronavirus SOPs were not being followed: Shafqat Mahmood

"The SOPs were not being followed as they should have been," he had said, adding that health department data showed rapid virus transmission in education institutes.

Stressing that children's health cannot be taken lightly, Mahmood said there were around 50 million students across the country i.e. one-fourth of our population. "They can become carriers. So it was necessary to shut down schools."

'Schools not closed completely'

Mahmood pointed out that the schools were not "shut down" but the students were barred from attending it in person. "We have asked schools to adopt an online mechanism."

The education minister said those who cannot adopt online schooling should give out homework. "Students or parents can be called once a week to submit the homework."

Read more: Punjab's Murad Raas says students to be promoted on basis of homework as schools close down

He asserted that schools will remain open till December 24.

Mahmood said the decision was taken after a "near consensus" was reached during the National Command and Operations Centre meeting.