President Nana Akufo-Addo has announced the resumption of school activities for second year students in Junior High Schools (JHS) and Senior High Schools (SHSs).
School activities were suspended in mid-March when Ghana detected its first case on March 12.
These group of students will go back to complete their term seven months after schools were suspended. The term begins on October 5 and ends on December 14.
This comes barely a week since continuing students in tertiary institutions also returned to complete their various semesters.
Final years have already been in school for almost a month and in the middle of their exit examinations.
Addressing the country in his 16th address since the country was hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, President Akufo-Addo said on Sunday, August 31 that: “The decision has been taken by the Ghana Education Service (GES), after consultation with the relevant stakeholders, for SHS 2 and JHS 2 students to return to school from 5th October to 14th December 2020 to complete their academic year”.
Junior high schools will operate with class sizes of 30 while senior high schools with have a maximum of 25 students per class.
They will be in school for 10 weeks to study, and write their end of term examinations.
Students in boarding houses are to return to their various dormitories on while day students will commute from home to their respective schools on the same date.
Prior to reopening, Mr Akufo-Addo said all schools will be fumigated and disinfected.
All teaching and non-teaching staff, will be given reusable face masks and each school will be provided with Veronica buckets, gallons of liquid soap, rolls of tissue paper, thermometer guns, and 200 milli-litre containers of sanitizers. JHS 2 students will be given one hot meal a day.
However, assemblies and sporting events remain banned; and the use by outsiders of school premises for other activities is still not allowed.
“We will continue to ensure that each school, which does not have its own sick bay, has been mapped to a health facility, and care is provided to the sick by nurses assigned to them,” President Akufo-Addo announced.
On the other hand, he said the GES has taken a decision, after further consultations “to postpone the remainder of the academic year for all nursery, kindergarten, primary, JHS 1 and SHS 1 students”.
The next academic year, he said will resume in January 2021, with appropriate adjustments made to the curriculum, to ensure that nothing is lost from the previous year.
“The relevant dispositions will also be made so that the presence, at the same time, in school of all streams of students, can occur in safety,” he stated.
He acknowledged the inconvenience and the financial burden the continued stay at home of children are posing to parents and guardians.
But pleaded for them to bear with the sacrifice “in our efforts to protect the lives of our children” as well as to limit and contain the spread of the virus in our country.