Akwa Ibom Ministry of Education has foiled attempts by some private schools’ owners in the state to resume the third term online without waiting for the government’s approval for resumption.
Both public and private secondary and nursery schools in the state were shut in March 26 by the government as a means of curtailing the spread of coronavirus pandemic.
The Commissioner for Education, Professor Nse Essien, who gave the warning Monday during an interactive session of Akwa Ibom State Education Think-tank Committee with education stakeholders in the state, said it would announce the resumption of both public and private schools when it was convinced about the safety of the children.
Essien said, “No school, both public and private, is authorised to start the 3rd term 2019/2020 school year, either in the schools’ environment or online. Resumption of schools for the school year will be announced when the government is convinced that our children will be safe in schools.
“I have been reliably informed that some private schools have already started the 3rd term online and have asked parents and guardians to pay fees and purchase digital gadgets for their wards. This should be discontinued. Any school that goes contrary to this instruction will have its licence withdrawn and will be prosecuted.”
Essien warned that any private school in the state that reopened for the third term either in a school environment or online before it gives the green light will have its licence withdrawn and the owner prosecuted.
The commissioner stated that the ongoing School-on-Radio programme for Junior Secondary School 3 and Senior Secondary 3 in the state was put in place to help the students prepare for their external examination, adding that government has also commenced the School-Radio programme for the primary schools this week.
He added that later in the week, a special website where all the lessons so far delivered on radio would be hosted to enable students to go back, revise and download both audio and lecture notes in lessons already delivered.