The General Secretary, Nigeria Union of Teachers (NUT), Mike Ene, has frowned on the move by the Federal Government to reopen schools, insisting that the time was not ripe.
“Currently, we are experiencing significant rise in the number of confirmed cases because we are in community transmission phase.
“In addition, government has not provided what is required for safe reopening of schools, especially in rural areas. Federal, state and local governments are shifting responsibilities, with some insisting that education is on the concurrent list, therefore, they won’t take certain steps.
“Mind you, these school children are coming from homes or locations where there are positive cases. Chances are high that such children would infect other children with the COVID-19 as was the case in Israel recently.
“Howbeit, the position of the NUT is that we are not ready for safe school reopening because the necessary things are not done yet by government at all levels. Also, we won’t like to expose our members, teachers, to some unnecessary health dangers.”
But the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), FCT chapter, thanked the government “for the kind consideration and directive that schools should be reopened for certain categories of students.”
Its Chairperson, Olusola Bankole, who spoke to Daily Sun last night, however, tasked the government to take the lead in ensuring that the COVID-19 prevention guidelines are strictly complied with in public schools so that private schools can follow.
“Eyes and attention are always on private schools and that ought not to be so,” she said.
She assured that NAPPS members in FCT would fully comply with the directives.
“As a matter of fact, our members have prepared long ago for this day. So, it won’t be difficult thing for us. Our only concern is the public schools where little or no attention is not paid.”
She lamented that NAPPS members have been badly affected by the pandemic.
“Many of our members have complained that they might not be able to come back to business because of the impact of the prolonged lockdown.
“Some have accumulated bills, unpaid children school fees, rent, staff salaries and several bills that have affected the smooth running of the school. I have consistently encouraged them and gave them hope of survival.”