Schools safe to reopen with proper SOP

According to ARCPM president, as long as parents and the operators follow the SOP, schools and kindergartens are safe to reopen


SCHOOLS and kindergartens are safe to reopen provided the standard operating procedures (SOPs) are adhered. Worries as many as 73 kindergartens and daycares under the Community Development Department (Kemas) were ordered to close due to the new Sivagangga cluster last week.

The closing order of the 73 kindergartens and daycares involved as many as 1,605 kindergarten pupils and 62 from daycares, and the closing of all premises would last for 14 days or further orders and advice from the Ministry of Health (MoH).

The cluster that was identified near the premises of these institutions had come from an eatery in Napoh, Jitra, Kedah.

Association of Registered Childcare Providers Malaysia (ARCPM) president Anisa Ahmad said presently, Kemas would have their own reasons for the closing, whereas the sentiment is different for her.

“As for me at the moment, as long as parents and the operators follow the SOP, it should be okay.

“But, if there is any close contact with an individual who is positive for Covid-19, then yes, they must close the taska or kindergarten, or school as soon as possible,” she told The Malaysian Reserve.

She added that immediately after, disinfecting and monitoring need to be done by the MoH. It was reported on Sunday that four sub-districts in Kedah have been put under the targeted Enhanced Movement Control Order due to the growing cases from the Sivagangga cluster.

Five schools were also ordered to close from Sunday until Aug 29. The schools are SMK Hosba, SK Hosba, SMK Megat Dewa, SK Megat Dewa and SK Kubang Palas.

The reopening of schools in Kuching, Sarawak — Padawan and Samarahan districts — has also been further postponed to Aug 17.

This is due to the spike in Covid-19 cases in Kuching as of late, whereas to date the current confirmed cases of the district are up to 443, and its Sentosa cluster has seen two generations of the virus spreading.

Meawnhile, a parent, Noor Hashikin Raffaiee said from a parental perspective, many parents/guardians may not be ready to send their children to daycares, kindergartens or schools at the moment as anything can happen.

“More so, with the recent case involving a school student, we may take care of ourselves and our children, but we don’t know about the precaution other people may adopt,” she said.

Last week, Health DG Datuk Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah maintained that the ministry is not recommending closure of schools, but there should be disinfection or cleaning of common-use areas.