Maputo — The Mozambican Minister of Education, Carmelita Namashalua, on Monday guaranteed that her ministry is willing to consult on proposals to revise the school calendar for this year, and on the subjects that should continue to be taught once schools re-open.
All Mozambican schools, from crèches to universities, have been closed since late March, as part of the efforts to restrict the spread of the coronavirus that causes the Covid-19 respiratory disease. The 12th grade of secondary school (the pre-university grade) will re-open, in at least some schools, on 27 July, but no date has yet been fixed for the re-opening of any other grades.
Speaking at a meeting with secondary school managers from Maputo city and province, Namashalua said her Ministry is drawing up strategies to adjust the teaching-learning process faced with the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“We will listen to ideas about revising the school year”, she said. “At the start of the year we had 38 weeks of teaching – but we have lost three months plus some weeks without classes, and this compromises the school year. We shall share with you, our colleagues, proposals for the school calendar as well as for readjusting the contents, since these matters are inseparable”.
“All the contents that are on the school syllabus are important and necessary”, she added, “but because we are in an emergency situation we must make some adjustments”.
She also urged all teachers and school managers to be activists, publicising the measures needed to prevent the spread of Covid-19, so as to guarantee “zero contamination” in the schools.
“We want our school to be a place where children are safe”, said Namashalua. The task of preventing the spread of Covid-19 was not just for the ministry, “it’s a task for everybody. We have to act together so that our children leave their homes safely, and arrive at school safely”.
The meeting was also an opportunity to discuss hygiene and sanitation in the schools, so as to ensure that, once classes resume, children will be able to wash their hands regularly, one of the basic measures for preventing the spread of the virus.
A fund of 3.5 billon meticais (about 50 million dollars) is available for the emergency improvements to schools required to allow them to re-open safely.
Source: Agencia de Informacao de Mocambique