KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 15 — The reopening of schools in stages from Oct 3, according to the phases of states under the National Recovery Plan (PPN), gives an indication that the country is now transitioning towards an endemic phase.

Senior Education Minister, Datuk Dr Radzi Jidin, said the approach (in phases) also showed that the country would return to normal.

“In the context of this PPN phases, we are bringing the country back to normal by ensuring that the procedures and rules we have introduced can be complied with, and schools can be reopened safely,” he said at a joint press conference with Senior Defence Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein, today.

On the meeting with the Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of Health and the National Security Council, he said that it was to ensure that the planning and implementation of school reopening could be carried smoothly and in an orderly manner.

He said the planning was important for all parties to ensure the safety of everyone, particularly students when schools reopen later.

On Sunday, Radzi announced the reopening of schools, using the weekly student rotation method, with the attendance capacity for students set at 50 per cent of the total to reduce the number in class and the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

For school reopening in the states under Phase Two of the PPN, only primary schools with special needs pupils (MBK) at Special Needs Public Schools (SKPK) and Integrated Special Education Programmes (PPKI) will reopen, while for secondary schools, only Form 6 students in Semester 2 who will be sitting for their Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM) examinations at the end of October will be involved.

Asked about the action against teachers who decline to get vaccinated, he said that the matter was still under discussion with the Public Service Department, and would be announced later.

“We see that the number of those who choose not to be vaccinated is around 2,500 people, and we will make sure that they will not be involved in face to face teaching, but will be given other tasks, and there will definitely be action taken against them,” he said.


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