Few students in final year classes turned up as schools resume in Edo on Monday after four months of closure.
FELLOW PRESS correspondent, who went round some of the public and private schools in Benin City, the state capital, observed that the schools enforced COVID-19 guidelines provided by the government for reopening.
As part of the guidelines, the schools are to ensure that the students as well as their teachers wear face mask, provide hand sanitisers and also make provision for regular hand washing.
While the state government provided all the needed items, including face masks for students in public schools, the private schools owners only made provision for hand sanitisers and points for hand washing.
FELLOW PRESS reports that even with these in place, the turn up of students at classes after over four months of closure was not impressive.
At Imaguero Girls College, FELLOW PRESS correspondent reports that as at 8:00 a.m, only a handful of students were available to commence learning.
A senior staff of the School, who pleaded anonymity, said that she had expected that the students would be eager to resume school after a prolonged stay at home.
She, however, said that it was not unexpected as most parents would not be readily disposed to allow their children back in school for fear of contracting the Coronavirus disease.
“As you can see for yourself, the teachers are more than the students; the students are scared to come back because of the disease,” she said.
Similarly, the Principal of Edokpolor Grammar School, Mr Austin Akenbor, said that though they were complying with COVID-19 guidelines, they expected a more robust turnout in schools from Tuesday.
Mr Jimoh Ijegbai, the State Commissioner for Education, however, expressed confidence that the students’ turn up will increase appreciably in the days to come.
“This is just the first day and am sure that the parents and the students are watching to see what happens today (Monday). Don’t also forget that the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) examination starts next Monday.
“As safety of these students, the state government has provided all that is required for their safety, including face masks.
“The fact that only terminal classes are resuming also makes things easier for us in terms of maintaining social distancing in classes.”