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Parents Enthusiastic, Baffled by School Reopening Notice

"About schools opening, am excited and can’t wait to see my son back to a physical school. About tuition, we shall look for it," Namatimba told URN.
20 Dec 2021 14:25
Gulu Senior Secondary School students - Photo by Dominic Ochola

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The announcement by the Ministry of Sports and Education to reopen schools on January 10th, 2022 triggered both excitement and confusion among parents. Many parents were off guard. To curtail the spread of the novel COVID-19 contagion, the Government imposed extended lockdown measures including the closure of education institutions consequently sending home over 1.5 million learners. 

The prolonged lockdown fueled teenage pregnancies, disorderliness, and criminal behavior among children under the helpless watch of their parents, many of whom lost jobs. Recently, the Ministry of Education set January 10th, 2022 as the date for reopening schools nationwide. Cathy Namatimba, a teacher and resident of Sseguku, a Kampala City suburb could not hide her excitement about the announcement.

"About schools opening, am excited and can’t wait to see my son back to a physical school. About tuition, we shall look for it," Namatimba told URN. Collins Mugisha, a resident of Kyebando Kisalosalo in Kawempe Division, said the prolonged closure of schools has become a burden to him because his children have become intolerable with weird behaviors. He says the school is a safer shelter for them.

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Agatha Tumwine, a teacher and concerned parent expressed concern that while some children from well-to-do families accessed online lessons, several of them were not treated with the same privilege creating an undesirable disparity that needs time to bridge. 

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Morris Mugenga Kayitaba, another parent observed that reopening of schools is a good stride by the government because the prolonged lockdown confined the children and deprived them of the opportunity to interact with their peers.

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Mary Laker, a police officer attached to Jinja Road Police Station, says that her son who was in S.1 before the closure of schools in March 2020 has overgrown. She says that although the reopening of schools is welcome, it will baffle salary earners.

The first term will run-up to April 15, 2022. Thereafter, learners will attain a break for three weeks and return for the second term spanning from May 9 and to August 12. Meanwhile, third term is slated to start on September 5th and run until December 9th, 2022. 

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