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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), has said it supported the resolution of the Federal Government to stop SSS 3 pupils from participating in the West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), previously scheduled to commence on August 4.
The union reasoned the government to close down schools until 2021 to guarantee adequate preparations, quoting the case in some countries such as Kenya.
Recall that the Federal Ministry of Education recently met with officials of the West African Examination Council (WAEC), in Abuja, and settled to announce a new date for the examination.
Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, the Minister of State for Education, had also said that Government would consult with the four other countries under WAEC to set a new date, while announcing the COVID19 mandatory guidelines for schools which must be preserved before July 29.
Prof. Biodun Ogunyemi ,the ASUU President, who made the motion in an interview with Sunday PUNCH, said no sensible Government would take such chances unless parents would be told to sign an undertaking.
“Kenya have closed all it schools till next year (2021), they also have exams to write. Safety first; if it means closing the schools until next year to keep save the lives of Nigerian children, and also the health of all Nigerians, so be it".
“If it is going to help us address cases that can lead to high mortality rate, I think the country should follow that path. If they need to cancel admission for the year, it is good for them. Life matters first, people must have life first before they can go to schools".
"All we are saying is that, they should not experiment with the lives of our children. The situation may soon normalise, and they can do their exams, and there is another opportunity for external candidates around November. it is not as if the door is totally closed”.
The President however noted that, “the first thing that should be addressed is if the schools are safe, and if the schools are not safe, An attempt to send back children to schools at a time there is an increase in Corona virus cases in Nigeria is like experimenting with the lives of our children".
If all the preventive measures which includes, social and physical distancing, provision of sanitisers, kitting the children as we see in other places, decontamination with water flowing in the schools, and all the gadgets are attained, then they can reopen the schools.
Meanwhile, the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS), has said that its members are ready for school reopening, and that as part of measures to curtail the spread of the virus, it has instructed its members to open schools for about four hours daily.
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