Schools’ resumption for third term not approved yet

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The Lagos State government has declared that it had not approved resumption for the third term 2019/2020 session for primary and secondary schools in the state.

This is as it urged private school owners to widely consult with parents before implementing online learning as the COVID-19 influenced lockdown persists.

A number of private schools have already informed parents that they would resume for the third term from 27th April through online learning platforms.

Schools across the country had been shut and many other public activities halted since 23rd March to curtail the spread of COVID-19.

Lagos Commissioner for Education, Mrs Folasade Adefisayo in a statement issued Wednesday evening.

She noted that the Ministry saw the “resumption” by private schools as a strategy for ensuring that students continue to learn while the school calendar continues as planned.

“Please, note that the third term resumption remains postponed until directives to the contrary,” she added.

“Most schools are charging for this online service; often at a discount on existing tuition fees while some schools are charging full fees.”

“Parents are concerned about the cost to them of this programme, ranging from fees charged by schools to cost of data and devices as well as the cost of fuelling generators to ensure steady electricity power supply. Parents also have to supervise online teachings to guard against the exposure of children to pornography, in addition to online harassment and bullying.”

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“The Ministry calls for continuous dialogue between school administrators and parents. We are aware that most parents are not working and earning money at the moment.

“We are also aware that schools continue to incur costs as teachers and other members of the staff have to be paid for providing online teaching. Furthermore, the schools, in some cases, will have to purchase devices for teachers and provide them with data to prepare for the daily teaching activities.

“In view of the aforementioned, we ask that schools consult extensively with parents and find a win-win solution that will be acceptable to all stakeholders.

“The Ministry wishes to state categorically that all schools in Lagos State remain closed and have not yet been opened for the third term.”

The commissioner urged parents to take advantage of the learning platforms through the mass media that the state had created.

In her words, “The State continues to offer free teachings on various media, especially radio and television. It will continue to improve on the educational offering of its distance learning programmes.

“We are pleased that students and pupils across private and public schools are taking advantage of this free service. Plans are also underway to ensure that our children in public schools are able to complete their term whenever the lockdown is lifted.”

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School resumption in November fake news

In a related development, the Federal Government has once again debunked reports on fixing a date for the resumption of schools for November.

Describing the report as ‘fake and misleading’, the Director, Press and Public Relations of the ministry, Ben Goong, said such statement did not emanate from the ministry.

He noted that plans were already on by the Federal Government in collaboration with the state governments to explore the possibility of online learning to bridge the gap.

“The release as the handiwork of an illiterate, who, going by the content of his release, also appears to be mental.”

“The ministry is asking parents, students and the general public to disregard the release in its entirety. There is no iota of truth about the release.

“Curiously, the letter is on a fake letterhead, fake information with dubious content to mislead the public.

“The ministry will no longer take such information for granted especially when it posses the capacity to mislead a large number of innocent Nigerians.”

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