Plans begin for Aug. 30 Saudi ‘back to school day’ after virus

It is mandatory to observe preventive measures to combat the virus. (SPA/File)
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Updated 06 August 2020

Plans begin for Aug. 30 Saudi ‘back to school day’ after virus

  • The Kingdom closed schools and universities on March 9

JEDDAH: Saudi parents, children, teachers and education chiefs began preparations in earnest on Wednesday for the new post-coronavirus school year to begin on Aug. 30.
Education Minister Dr. Hamad bin Mohammed Al-Asheikh held a virtual meeting with education directors from throughout the Kingdom to discuss preparations for the big return.
The minister called for the completion of all maintenance and operational work at schools and educational facilities in preparation for the new term, with full provision of hygiene equipment and sanitizers, and access to books and educational materials. He also urged investment in teacher training on remote education programs.
It was essential to observe preventive measures against the spread of the coronavirus, he said, with appropriate training if necessary.
The Kingdom closed schools and universities on March 9 as the COVID-19 pandemic took hold, and introduced remote learning systems. Despite the continuing reduction in virus cases, some parents would like distance learning to continue.
“With children, no matter how careful staff and teachers are, they’re out of control and this could lead to a spread in the pandemic worse than before,” one mother, Amal Turkistani, told Arab News.
“I would prefer that they continue schooling remotely, or part-time. I really don’t think it’s a good idea right now when the world hasn’t yet found a cure. I’m not sure if I’ll be sending my son to school.”
Another mother, Reham Al-Mistadi, said children did not understand the concept of social distancing and would not observe it.
“It is difficult to have children attend school,” she said. “They’re just kids, they’re unaware of the importance of social distancing and using sanitizers.
It will also be difficult for teachers to control the situation because children love to move around and play with the other children.
“The best option is distance education, although it is difficult for children at this stage.”

 


2020 G20 Leaders’ Summit to be held virtually on Nov. 21 – 22 

Updated 28 September 2020

2020 G20 Leaders’ Summit to be held virtually on Nov. 21 – 22 

  • G20 presidency to build on the success of the extraordinary virtual G20 Leaders’ Summit held in March

RIYADH: The 2020 G20 Leaders’ Summit will be held virtually on November 21 – 22 and will be chaired by the Saudi Arabia's King Salman, the G20 presidency said in a statement carried by the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) Monday.

"The G20 presidency will build on the success of the extraordinary virtual G20 Leaders’ Summit held in March, and on the outcomes of over 100 virtual working groups and ministerial meetings," the statement said.

"The G20 is leading the fight against this global pandemic, taking swift and unprecedented actions to protect lives, livelihoods and the most vulnerable," it said. 

The G20 has contributed over $21 billion to support the production, distribution, and access to diagnostics, therapeutics, and vaccines.

It has also injected $11 trillion to safeguard the global economy.

It has further launched a debt suspension initiative for the least developed countries that would allow beneficiary countries to defer $14 billion in debt payments due this year and use these amounts instead for financing their health systems and social programs.

"The upcoming G20 Leaders’ Summit will focus on protecting lives and restoring growth, by addressing vulnerabilities uncovered during the pandemic and by laying down the foundations for a better future," said the statement. 

"The Summit will also focus on fostering international action to realize opportunities of the 21st century for all, by empowering people and protecting our planet, whilst harnessing the potential of innovation to shape new frontiers."