Schools will remain closed during the July/August break as per normal, Minister of Education Priya Manickchand announced on Monday.

Minister Manickchand had previously revealed that schools may remain open in order to address the learning loss brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, but following consultations with teachers, this will no longer occur.

“We believe that it would be best, at this point, to have every school close for the July/August holidays as usual and return to school in September refreshed,” Minister Manickchand told the press at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport following the arrival of the special Pfizer vaccine for children.

According to her, “teachers felt particularly tired because, while it is true that we were home, they were still working.”

During consultations with teachers and students in recent weeks, the majority were against the idea of schools remaining open during the holiday, the Education Minister said.

“While there are some teachers who are telling us very, very strongly that we need to do this because we need to recapture the time, there are enough teachers telling us they don’t want to do it and we respect that,” Minister Manickchand explained.

Nevertheless, some teachers will work during the break, especially those who teach exam classes but Minister Manickchand said “this happens every year, outside and inside of COVID where persons try to finish the syllabus, do labs, do extra work, do exam papers and so on in the holiday time.”

The ministry will soon launch mass reinforcement lessons that will be aired on the Guyana Learning Channel and the ministry’s radio station.

“We are going to publish, in an organised way, courses of study in different areas so that if parents want their children to get reinforcement or what we call lessons, for free, they can tune in to the different channels,” Minister Manickchand said.

The programmes will cater to the nursery, primary and secondary levels.