KAMPALA: Government has directed schools to ensure early examinations for non-candidate classes , a move will see schools close early for third term holidays.
“Cabinet considered and approved a proposal from the Ministry of Health to reduce the third term by two weeks so as to decongest schools that are likely to increase vulnerability of children to Ebola infections. Closing schools earlier will reduce areas of concentration where children are in daily close contact with fellow children, teachers and other staff who could potentially spread the virus,” the State Minister for Primary Education, Dr.Moricu Kaducu told journalists on Tuesday at the Uganda Media Centre.
She explained that the move stemmed from a guidance by the Health Ministry as one of the ways to ensure they control the spread of Ebola virus.
According to the junior education minister, as part of the move to ensure schools close early for third term, pre-primary, primary and secondary schools will be required to close for this term on November 25, two weeks earlier that it was scheduled to happen.
She noted that district, municipal, and city education officers have been asked to implement the directive countrywide.
“The schools will be required to conduct final or promotional exams a little earlier effective next week. Upon completion, children will be required to immediately return safely to their homes in a staggering manner to avoid congestion and congregating,” Dr.Kaducu said.
The minister however asked schools to communicate and prepare learners for the abrupt change that will see them sit for end of term exams two weeks earlier than scheduled.
Since the outbreak of Ebola in September, a total of 132 people have been confirmed positive for the virus disease, 61 have recovered while 53 have succumbed to the disease.
On the other side, a total of 18 confirmed cases are still admitted and receiving treatment at both the Mubende and Entebbe Ebola treatment units.
The outbreak epicenter remains Mubende and Kassanda districts.
Statistics from the Ministry of Health indicate that among children, a total of 23 Ebola cases have been confirmed eight of which have died, five have fully recovered, 16 under isolation .
Overall , 11 school children have been diagnosed with Ebola virus with five schools in Kampala city , Wakiso, and Mubende districts were confirmed as having had some of the childen who were infected with the virus.