- Punjab Minister for Education Murad Raas responds to school closure requests via his Twitter account.
- Learning losses children have suffered are “tremendous”, Raas says.
- Schools should be the “last place to ever shut down”, Raas says.
Punjab’s Minister for Education Murad Raas on Friday said that he was “shocked” to know that some people want the government to “shut down” schools.
Taking to Twitter, the minister expressed concern over people messaging him to close schools.
“I am shocked,” said the minister, adding that the learning losses children have suffered since the start of COVID-19 are “tremendous.” At this point, schools should be the “last place to ever shut down”, he said.
“Who are these ignorant people? Unbelievable!” he added.
UN urges full reopening of South Asia schools
UNICEF has called on governments in South Asia to safely resume in-person learning and ensure that students catch up, as well as improving connectivity, with a top official warning the consequences could last decades.
According to a UNESCO database, schools in India, Bangladesh, Nepal and Afghanistan remain only partially open, while those in Pakistan and Sri Lanka are fully open.
A report by UNICEF also warned that child mortality is projected to rise as pandemic disruptions to health services have left millions of children without lifesaving vaccines.