NST: Reopening of schools, return to physical learning based on NRP status of states, says minister

KUALA LUMPUR: The Education Ministry today reiterated that the reopening of schools and the return of physical classrooms in stages from Oct 3 onwards will be based on the status of the state that the schools are located in under the National Recovery Plan (NRP).

The explanation was made by Education Minister Datuk Dr Radzi Jidin in a four-minute clip following confusion among social media users from his press conference yesterday on the reopening of schools.

"Based on the feedback from the announcement (on the reopening of schools in stages) yesterday, through the media including social media, we found there are some quarters who assumed that all schools nationwide will reopen for physical classes starting Oct 3.

"I want to stress here again that the reopening of schools (for physical classes) will be made in stages according to the phase (status of the state) under the NRP.

"No schools will reopen (for physical classes and students will continue with home-based learning) if it is located in a state which is under Phase One (of the NRP)," he said in the clip.

States which are still under Phase One of the NRP are Kedah and Johor.

For the federal territories and states which have transitioned into Phase Two of the NRP such as Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya, Selangor, Perak, Penang, Melaka, Pahang, Terengganu, Kelantan and Sabah, Radzi said the return of physical classrooms for schools at the primary level will only involve special needs pupils at Sekolah Kebangsaan Pendidikan Khas (SKPK) and Integrated Special Education Programme (PPKI).

As for secondary schools in states under Phase Two of the NRP, Radzi said the return of physical classrooms on Oct 3 will only involve Form 6 students in Semester 2 since they need to prepare for the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM) examination scheduled end of next month.

"As for states under Phase Three of the NRP, apart from special needs pupils at SKPK and PPKI, the reopening of physical classes for primary schools will also involve pre-schoolers," he said.

For secondary schools located in states under Phase Three of the NRP, Radzi said the reopening of physical classes will involve Form 6 students in all semesters as well as Form 5 students.

Three states which are currently under Phase Three of the NRP are Sarawak, Perlis and Negri Sembilan.

As explained yesterday, Radzi reiterated that primary and secondary schools in states which have moved into Phase Four of the NRP will resume physical classes in stages from Oct 3 onwards.

"I had also explained yesterday that the ministry will implement (weekly) rotation (system) for (physical classes) to reduce the capacity of students in the classroom to 50 per cent at any given time.

"This framework on the reopening of schools (physical classes) is implemented to bring students closer to schools and to ensure students could return to schools under a safe environment," he said.

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