Schools to reopen in Israel on Tuesday amid pandemic

Over 2 million Israeli students will return to schools on Tuesday amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Education Ministry has come up with stringent guidelines on how the school year should be conducted. While younger children have been divided into smaller groups and will attend school between five to six days a week, the older students will conduct most of their studies at home, Xinhua news agency reported.

Through a campaign called “studying safely”, the Ministry has conveyed the guidelines to parents and students through varying media.

Children of the fourth grade and above will be obligated to wear a mask at all times.

Israel has one of the highest proportion of young students in the world, but expenditure on education is not high, which leads to crowded classrooms.

Coupled with a significant shortage in teachers, the problem has been intensified due to the ongoing pandemic which requires social distancing and other safety measures.

When the Israeli government imposed strict lockdown measures in March, schools were shut down.

As measures were lifted, children returned to schools in mid-May.

In the beginning, only the younger students returned and studied in small groups. As virus levels plummeted and public pressure mounted, all the children went back to school with virtually no restrictions.

The virus has led to the deaths of over 900 Israelis, with more than 110,000 others infected with the disease.

While the number of students who contracted the virus is relatively low, there is still concern that with confirmed cases increasing, opening schools will only further worsen the situation.