Hanoi authorities are telling students to say home until early April as the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) spreads in Vietnam.
In a meeting on Wednesday, chairman of the municipal People’s Committee Nguyen Duc Chung stated that the epidemic is becoming more serious and may get intense over the next 15 days.
Chairman Chung decided to extend the existing school break through April 5 given the current situation.
He asked the municipal Department of Education and Training to work with the education ministry regarding the application of alternative teaching methods such as online lessons or educational television.
He also told local residents to refrain from going outside as much as possible.
The People’s Committee in Ho Chi Minh City previously stated that all K-12 students, as well as university and college students, in the southern metropolis will not return to school until at least April 5.
Students in Vietnam had been scheduled to return to school on February 3 following the Lunar New Year holiday, but the COVID-19 epidemic has caused repeated closures nationwide.
The novel coronavirus, which first emerged in the central Chinese city of Wuhan in December 2019, has infected over 218,700 people and killed more than 8,900 globally as of Thursday morning, according to Ministry of Health statistics.
Vietnam’s COVID-19 tally has soared to 76, with 16 having fully recovered and been discharged from the hospital by February 16. No death has been reported in the country so far.
Hanoi has 20 active COVID-19 patients while nine patients are currently being treated in Ho Chi Minh City.
Among the active cases, one patient in the northern province of Ninh Binh has recovered after testing negative for the novel coronavirus twice and is ready to be discharged from the hospital.
Four other cases in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi, and Da Nang have also tested negative for the first time, according to local health departments.