By G9ija

Resumption of schools on Monday is threatened by the rising COVID-19 infections last December, the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 advised against early resumption of schools and recommended January 18.

However, some states reopened schools last week. Others reopened on Monday.

But positive cases have been on the rise since the beginning of the month with an average of 1,000 cases daily.

The alarming rate of infection and deaths has forced the government to rethink  the resumption date.

Minister of Education Adamu Adamu said in Abuja on Monday that the resumption date will be reviewed.

He told reporters: “The issue of January 18 for school resumption is subject to review. Even at our PTF meeting today we discussed it in line with the rising cases in the country. So we are subject to review the date.”

Chairman of PTF Boss Mustapha added that reopening of schools is among the causes of virus spike.

He also identified reopening of businesses and religion centres as other causes.

Some public higher institutions are emulating the private universities in conducting online teaching as a way to continue with their programmes without the danger of COVID-19.

The University of Ilorin said it was ready for virtual teaching for its students.

The Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) of the university, Prof. Sylvia Malomo, said: “The university management has committed enormous resources to the development of infrastructure to enhance the effective delivery of the envisaged virtual teaching and learning.

“Students will be taught virtually and will also be intermittently evaluated online to determine the level and quality of knowledge they are receiving.

“This will also determine the desirability or otherwise of further usage of the virtual method of teaching and learning,” she said.

According to her, the university is striving to ensure that it covers lost grounds due to the rampaging coronavirus pandemic and the strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).

She explained that all the academic staff of the university had been trained on the effective use of online teaching method.

She added that the training had been replicated at faculty and departmental levels to ensure that everyone involved was properly empowered for efficient service delivery.

The deputy vice-chancellor said she was optimistic that students of the institution would adapt to the new method.

Malomo noted that secondary school students across the country, successfully used the method at the peak of the pandemic.

The Senate of Ekiti State University (EKSU) also on Monday announced that the institution would resume online academic activities from Monday.

A statement by Mr Bode Olofinmuagun, Head, Directorate and Corporate Affairs, said: “Only students who have completed payment of all prescribed fees/charges will have the opportunity to join the online classes.

“All students of the University are advised to visit their personalized students dashboard on the University portal www.eksuportal@eksu.edu.ng as well as the University website, http://www.eksu.edu.ng for further directives on the virtual learning system.

“Please note that it is not compulsory for students to be on campus before they can participate at the online/virtual learning.

“Senate wishes to assure all the students of quality teaching and learning at the online classes as the University had made adequate arrangements for the exercise,” it said.