Colombo, April 23 – Sri Lanka’s Army Chief, General Shavendra Silva yesterday said that opening schools on May 11 may not be possible as several logistics would have to be put in place to ensure the safety of children in classrooms.
“As of now I do not foresee that it can be opened on May 11. My belief is that 75 percent it may not be possible,” General Silva said, quoted in the Daily Mirror.
He explained that even if schools do re-open, there will have to be a first handed special operation put in place and guidelines will have to be set as Sri Lankan schools had a minimum of 30 to 40 children per class.
“A lot of logistics are required to think and practice before schools start. Everyone in the school will have to know exactly what they can do and what they cannot. There is a lot of planning to do before children can attend school. So considering all these logistics we wonder whether every school has that much of facilities to cope up and open. This is the reason I believe we may not be able to open on May 11,” General Silva said.
The government on April 11 announced that schools will be reopened for their second term on May 11, revising its decision to reopen schools on April 20.
However Education Minister Dullus Alahapperuma explained that this decision would be reviewed again in the first week of May, by health experts and if schools were advised to remain closed considering the country’s situation, then the government would further delay its opening.
“Opening schools is not a political decision. We will let the health experts review the situation and advise us what to do. If schools cannot open on May 11, we will keep it closed further,” Alahapperuma said.