Trial period for schools

The month of May will be a trial period for schools to operate under new COVID-19 guidelines.

Prime Minister James Marape made this known during yesterday evening’s COVID-19 briefing.

He stressed that schools will ‘live and operate’ with the protocols as primary and secondary school classes resume on May 4th.

“And if we see those protocols are breached, or if we see that corona (virus) is now affecting all our schools in our country, then before Parliament resumes on the 2nd of June for SOE to be dispensed with, then we will have enough information on hand from the control point perspective to make an informed decision.

“Our higher education secretary and the department will be meeting with our controller and health team here to establish protocols to ensure the higher education sector is restored back to life on the 27th of April, and that is next week Monday.

“That is because some programs that are being offered, for instance, medical school, and some special degree programs in the University of Technology, need to start school again on this date so that they could have enough academic days or weeks to complete the study for this year.”

SOE Controller, David Manning, added that restrictions will be relaxed, but not all at once. This is so that if anything goes wrong, there will still be some control measures in place to cushion the impact as well as bring back control.

Carmella Gware