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Back-to-school date delayed to May in most parts of Vietnam

Saturday, April 18, 2020, 17:30 GMT+7
Back-to-school date delayed to May in most parts of Vietnam
Students attend a cooking class at an elementary school in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam in this file photo. Photo: H.G. / Tuoi Tre

Many provinces and cities in Vietnam, including Ho Chi Minh City, have again postponed their school reopening to early May, prolonging an already months-long break to stem the spread of novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

In its latest directive on Saturday, the People’s Committee of Ho Chi Minh City decided to keep all schools and universities in the southern metropolis closed until the end of May 3.

This is an extended closure due to COVID-19 after the city had previously asked all K-12 students, as well as university and college students to stay home through April 19.

The municipal People's Committee said it will continue to propose that the Ministry of Education and Training adjust the academic plan for the 2019-20 school year, the back-to-school timeline, as well as the start of the 2020-21 school year.

Several other localities have also announced prolonging their school break until next month.

Meanwhile, Hanoi decided on a shorter delay of its back-to-school date by telling all students to stay home through April 22.

The central city of Da Nang has asked local students to stay home until further notice.

Noticeably, the southernmost province of Ca Mau — categorized as a "low-risk" locality by the National Steering Committee on COVID-19 Prevention and Control — has asked its 9th- and 12th-grade students to get back to school next Monday, April 20, the soonest among all localities.

Locality Back-to-school plan
Ca Mau 9th and 12th graders: April 20
Vinh Long 9th and 12th graders: April 27; others: pending further notice
Phu Yen 9th and 12th graders: still considering, April 27 at the soonest
Binh Phuoc Stay home through April 26
Cao Bang Remains undecided between the end of April and early May
Dak Lak Early May expected
Thanh Hoa Middle and high schools: early May expected; others: in 1-2 weeks
Yen Bai Undecided; April 20 at the soonest, June 15 at the latest
Lao Cai Early May expected
Ha Nam Stay home through May 3
Nghe An High schools: early May expected; others: in 1-2 weeks
Quang Nam High schools: early May expected; others: in 1-2 weeks
Dong Thap Stay home through May 2
Quang Ninh Stay home through April 30
Da Nang Stay home until further notice
Hanoi Stay home through April 22
Quang Ngai May 4 expected
Tien Giang Stay home through May 3
Long An Early May expected
Thua Thien - Hue Early May expected
Ho Chi Minh City Stay home through May 3

Schools across Vietnam have remained shut since the end of the Lunar New Year holiday in early February, with the closure being repeatedly extended owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Local departments of education and training, together with the education ministry, have been applying alternative teaching methods such as online lessons and educational television to keep students focused on schoolwork.

Vietnam has so far confirmed 268 cases of COVID-19, a tally that has stayed unchanged for more than 48 hours since Thursday.

Only 67 patients remained in treatment on Saturday morning, including 66 Vietnamese and one foreigner.

No death related to the respiratory disease has been reported in the country.

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