ADDS FURTHER REMARKS OF EDUCATION MINISTER ZIYA SELCUK AND BACKGROUND ON TURKEY’S COVID-19 EXPERIENCE
By Ali Murat Alhas
ANKARA (AA) - Turkey will reopen schools on Sept. 21 with measures in place to counter the coronavirus, the country's education minister said Wednesday.
Ziya Selcuk said in a news conference that students will return to the campus gradually and in phases.
The minister said classrooms will be arranged in accordance with social distancing rules and schools provided with disinfectants and masks.
He went on to say that the continuation of face-to-face classes depended on how responsibly families and students behaved.
According to Selcuk, swift measures will be taken if students’ families or nearby circles are diagnosed with coronavirus.
Over 2,000 inspectors have been checking standards of schools ahead of the planned reopening.
The new school year will commence nationwide on Aug. 31 with classes held remotely.
Private schools may start online classes from Aug. 17.
Schools across the country were closed in mid-March as part of measures to curb the spread of coronavirus.
Turkey has so far reported over 244,000 coronavirus cases and above 227,000 recoveries. The death toll stands at 5,891.