Final and second year students who are returning to school Monday have been cleared to undertake religious activities despite strict protocols to prevent them from contracting the deadly novel coronavirus.
Mass gathering and sporting activities have already been banned and visitors will also not be allowed to the schools during the six weeks that final year and gold track students will be on campus.
Addressing the nation on measures taken by the government to combat the spread of the virus in schools, President Akufo-Addo said students will however be permitted to hold religious activities like church service while on campus.
“There will be no mass gatherings and no sporting activities. Religious activities, under the new protocols, will be permitted. Social distancing and the wearing of face masks are obligatory in our schools,” he stated.
Final and second year gold track students in Senior High Schools are to return to school on Monday, June 22 for six weeks during which the final years will prepare to sit for their WASSCE examination.
It will also be for the gold track students to complete their final semester to be at par with their colleagues in the green track system.
But a maximum of 25 students will be permitted in each class.
All day students in schools with boarding houses will be resident in these boarding houses, but day students, in schools without boarding facilities, will commute from home, and will be required to adhere to enhanced hygiene protocols.
President Akufo-Addo said enough food supplies have been distributed to all schools ahead of the partial reopening.
“Government is also making available 350 buses and 840 pickup vehicles to senior high schools that did not receive vehicles in 2016” he announced.
As part of the protocols, all 1,167 Senior High Schools in the country have been fumigated and disinfected by the waste management giant Zoomlion Ghana Limited against bed bug infestation and covid-19 respectively.
Other measures, President Akufo-Addo said have been put in place to ensure the safety of both teaching and non-teaching staff
“Each student, teaching and non-teaching staff, invigilator and school administrator, numbering some 800,000, will be provided with three pieces of reusable face masks” the President said.
Two of the reusable facemasks will be provided them Monday while the third will be given within a fortnight.
Despite the provision of masks for the students, the President has urged parents to provide their wards and children with at least one more face mask for use on their way to school.
“A total of 18,000 Veronica Buckets, 800,000 pieces of two hundred millilitre sanitizers, 36,000 rolls of tissue paper, 36,000 gallons of liquid soap, and 7,200 thermometer guns have been distributed,” Nana Akufo-Addo said.