The Federal Government has said that it is convinced that schools should be re-opened for in-person academic activities.
The Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, disclosed this on Thursday September 10, in Abuja at a meeting of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19.
The meeting was presided over by the Minister of Information and Culture on behalf of the Chairman of PTF and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha.
The meeting was aimed at seeking support towards preventing community spread of COVID-19.
Nwajiuba said the federal government is still evaluating the situation.
“At the moment, we have not come to the point where we can say we are convinced that schools can manage themselves and reopen comfortably.
“Our teams have gone out and we will use the whole of this week and next week to do a proper evaluation,” he said.
“We are going round to see the level of compliance but most importantly we are waiting to get an update on all the facilities in every part of Nigeria.
“So, it is a work in progress,” he added.
The minister stated further that the government strongly believed in the opinions of experts that 15 percent of transmission of the pandemic is from the school environment and that was why they proposed remodeling of classes.
“We believe the experts that a school system is a suspect place for transmission and that is why we are working with them, particularly on guidelines.
“We are suggesting that classes be remodeled if there are not enough classrooms for social distancing,” he said.
He added that they experimented with the system in the past weeks during the West African School Certificate Examinations and the Joint Admission Matriculation Examination.
Nwajuiba underscored the need to collaborate with the states for a seamless and safe reopening of schools, particularly at the primary level.
He said the states were trying to look at their peculiar situation using the national guidelines.