| 23 April 2024, Tuesday |

Schools in Lebanon reopen after three-month closure

BEIRUT: School pupils in Lebanon returned to the classroom Wednesday, following a more than three-month closure in guidance with coronavirus prevention measures.

Caretaker Education Minister Tarek Majzoub, who announced the reopening last week, said that pupils will be taught under a blended learning approach, in a mixture of face-to-face teaching and online learning.

Lebanese Baccalaureate pupils in Year 12 will return first to prepare for summer examinations, followed by Brevet pupils in Year 9 and kindergarten children May 5. All other school children will return by May 17.

Schoolchildren in Lebanon have suffered from disrupted learning over the last year as a result of the coronavirus pandemic that has forced most teaching to be done solely online, which has created challenges for both teachers and pupils alike.

Official exams were canceled by the government last year, but will go ahead this year, despite pressure from student and teaching groups for them to be axed once again.

The Education Ministry has stated that Grade 12 Baccalaureate exams will take place in person July 26, which students must pass to achieve their diploma. However, Brevet exams will be replaced by tests prepared by the ministry and taken in school.

Last week Majzoub said “the difficulty level will be studied” of exams, with the curriculum adapted to take into consideration the unprecedented teaching style of the last year.

“The harsh economic conditions have affected everyone. Therefore we must cooperate to save the academic year,” Majzoub said.

However, the syndicate of teachers and the private education institutions union stressed Monday the need to cancel intermediate exams and adopt marks based on final tests taken at school.

In addition, the group called for distanced learning to continue, and the “speeding up for teachers and other staff members in public and private schools to receive the coronavirus vaccine,” to ensure safe conditions for the return of schooling.

Together with the Health Ministry, Majzoub launched at the end of March a vaccination campaign to inoculate the education sector, with 17,000 jabs allocated for high school teachers.

  • TDS