COVID-19: Ministry Allots 2.4bln Birr to Support Safe Reopening of Schools

ADDIS ABEBA – Ministry of Education said on Monday it has allocated over 2.4 billion birr extra budget to support schools’ effort to safely restart class amid covid-19 pandemic.

The majority of finance will be channeled to public schools but private ones too will get part of it, said Getahun Mekuria (PhD), Minister of Education, during a press briefing.

Accordingly, both private and public schools will share the one billion birr facemask package which will boost schools effort to avert Coronavirus transmission.

The remaining 1.4 billion birr School Grant will only be channeled to the public and government.
It will fill their budget gap that could be created as a result of their endeavor to cut the spread of the virus, said the minister.

The country will reopen class during the current academic year in three phases with strict adherence to COVID-19 prevention guidelines set by health and education ministries.

The guideline sets maximum number of students in a classroom to 25 and one student per desk in order to implement social distancing as part of an effort to contain the spread of COVID-19.

The minister expects the limited number of teachers may have an impact on the restart due to the reimplementation of shifts in schools.

“We, therefore, encourage qualified teachers to voluntarily support us in filling the possible gap in the number of teachers,” he said.

Ethiopia has more than 46,000 schools, 700,000 teachers, and more than 27 million students enrolled both at primary and secondary schools.

The minister said the COVID-19 guidelines in the education sector will strictly be implemented and urged for the public to follow them while sending their kids to school.


By Sisay Sahlu