The Ministry of Education on Thursday received a number of sanitary supplies from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Guyana arm as preparation continues for the reopening of school on September 6.

The items were received by Permanent Secretary (PS) Alfred King at the ministry’s Brickdam office.

“We are working to ensure that all schools, all the environment for learning is sanitized, is presented in a safe way, we conform to the COVID guidelines for engagement and interaction and so, the timely donation of UNHCR will go a long way in helping us to provide a safe environment that we are anticipating and preparing for our learners,” the PS remarked.

King noted the importance of reopening schools for face-to-face learning as children have been away from physical classes for more than 18 months.

And with the government’s vaccination campaign in full swing, the PS added that some teachers who are fully vaccinated are eager to return to the classroom.

Meanwhile, the Head (ag) of UNHCR Guyana Suenanica de Rozario said the agency is pleased to lend support to Guyana and the Ministry of Education in its bid to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus while also ensuring that all school-aged students have access to education.

“We commend the ministry for the reopening of schools in a very safe and controlled manner and we also congratulate the ministry for the launch of the Education Sector plan 2021 to 2025.

“We continue to work together with the Ministry of Education and commend them for their inclusive approach of children into the mainstream education, irregardless of nationality in Guyana,” the UNHCR head noted.

The ministry was presented with 5,000 bars of soap, 5,000 bottles of surface disinfectants along 5,000 face masks and 150 bottles of hand sanitizers.

With the reopening of schools, it is the hope of the Education Ministry to bring learners back into formal education system.

However, parents who choose not to send their child to school on the days they are scheduled to attend will be enjoined with the responsibility of ensuring that the child is continuously engaged at home.

The ministry continues the rollout of measures to keep children engaged during the pandemic; these include printing worksheets, expanding the Guyana Learning Channel, and launching quiz platforms.