Schools reopen in Uganda after world’s longest COVID shutdown

Uganda reopens schools on Monday, ending The longest coronavirus-related shutdown in the world Returning millions of students to the classroom for the first time in nearly two years.

Why it matters: Uganda initially closed schools in March 2020, affecting more than 10.4 million students. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

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  • The duration of the lockdown has been criticised by some who claim the government is using the virus to “suppress dissent”. The New York Times pointed out.

  • Janet Museveni, First Lady of Uganda, Defend the shutdown Last year, it said it was implemented to “ensure the safety of children’s lives”.

Big picture: Vaccination rates in Uganda remain low, according to The Times.

  • The reopening also comes as a highly contagious variant of Omicron spreads.

  • The Times noted that while the government has attempted to implement distance education through television, radio and the internet, “many households do not have readily available electronics or electricity, and are led by their own parents with limited education, hindering their ability to help them. children.”

  • The government’s National Planning Agency found that 51 percent of students stopped learning during the school closures, and “as many as a third of students may not be returning to classrooms now,” The Times reported.

What are they talking about: “All schools have implemented guidelines and standard operating procedures to ensure the safe return of children to school,” Education Minister John Muyingo said. told AFP.

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