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Egypt says no coronavirus cases in schools

Workers spray disinfectant as a precaution to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, on 9 March 2020 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]
Workers spray disinfectant as a precaution to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, on 9 March 2020 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Egyptian education minister yesterday said that schools would continue as normal, stressing that there were no suspected coronavirus cases found.

 In an official statement on Facebook, Tarek Shawky said that schools and universities would "continue their daily operations", referring to recent reports claiming schools would be shut down over the coronavirus spread.

"No changes intended in school curriculums during the transition and no changes in end of year exam dates," Shawky stressed.

"The ministry has decided to halt all educational activities such as art and music education, yes core subjects' classes will continue as usual," Shawky said, explaining that the move was aimed at "reducing the number of hours of the school day, avoiding gatherings as part of school activities … as a precautionary procedure."

READ: Iran seeks $5bn emergency funding as 10,000 coronavirus cases detected

"The ministry is currently preparing a potential 'study from home' option for grades from three to eight for all core subjects, through the ministry's official website," Shawky pointed out, adding that grades 10, 11, and 12 would continue education through the ministry's Egyptian Knowledge Bank (EKB).

The statement pointed out that the plan would be implemented "in cooperation with the health ministry."

Coronavirus is affecting the whole world, will it unite us - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Coronavirus is affecting the whole world, will it unite us? – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Egypt yesterday announced its second death from the coronavirus; a 60-year-old woman suffering from acute pneumonia.

The number of confirmed cases in Egypt has risen to 80, the Ministry of Health added.

Activists believe the number of those affected is far higher. According to Egypt Watch, patients who tested positive were being kept in military hospitals, which are not subject to the direct supervision of the Ministry of Health, sparking fears that cases would not necessarily be recorded.

READ: UK donates $100,000 to help Palestinians tackle coronavirus outbreak

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