MINEDUC closes primary, secondary schools in Kigali

On 18 January 2021 at 08:19

The Ministry of Education (MINEDUC) has closed nursery, primary and secondary schools in Kigali city and encouraged students to attend classes online.

In a statement released yesterday, MINEDUC explained that the decision concerning public and private schools must go into effect on Monday 18th January 2021.

According to MINEDUC, the directive taken after consultation with the Ministry if Health was taken to prevent upsurging COVID-19 cases especially in Kigali city.

“Boarding students in schools located in Kigali city will stay and continue to receive essential services,” reads part of the statement. “All schools out of Kigali will continue to operate as usual in adherence to COVID-19 preventive measures,” adds the statement.

These measures will be reviewed after two weeks upon health assessment.

On 7th January 2021, MINEDUC announced that pupils in Pre Primary and Lower Primary School (P1-3) would resume studies on 18th January 2021 following ten months of suspension due to COVID-19 pandemic.

At the time, the Minister of Education, Dr. Uwamariya Valentine requested parents to start preparations for anticipated reopening.

“Children from nursery schools and lower primary schools (P1 to P3) will resume studies on 18th January 2021. Parents and students should start preparations to be ready by that time,” she said.

Dr. Uwamariya however explained that the decision would be assessed in accordance with the prevalence of COVID-19 infections and advises from the Ministry of Health.

New COVID-19 infections continue increase whereby Rwanda has recorded 1402 cases and 22 deaths from 11th to 17th January 2021. The majority of new cases were found in Kigali City with highest figures of new infections which started increasing gradually towards the end of last year.

The Ministry of Health shows that 862 COVID-19 cases and 19 deaths were recorded in Kigali in one week.

Rwanda confirmed the first Coronavirus patient on 14th March 2020. Since then, 11 032 people have been tested positive out of 796 867 sample tests of whom 7363 have recovered while 3527 are active cases while 142 have succumbed to the pandemic.

In a bid to prevent the spread of Coronavirus, the Government ordered the closure of all schools that saw all students returning home in March 2020.

Universities and higher learning institutions were allowed to reopen in September 2020 under strict COVID-19 control measures.

In October 2020, the Ministry of Education announced 2nd November as the reopening date for learners in primary 5 and 6 classes. Students from ordinary level, senior 5 and 6 also resumed studies the same day.

The second batch started the second term on 23rd November 2020. This includes learners in primary 4 classes, and secondary school students from senior 1, 2 and 4.

The current MINEDUC timetable shows that students will start the third term on 19th March 2021 to end on 9th July 2021.

The second term’s holidays will run from 3rd April to 15th April 2021. Finalists in primary schools, ordinary level and senior six are expected to sit for national exams in July 2021.