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Jakarta Students Head Back to School



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In-person learning resumes at a state elementary school in Kalisari, East Jakarta on August 30, 2021 after nearly two years of closure due to the Covid-19 pandemic. (Joanito De Saojoao)

Jakarta. Students in Jakarta are heading back to school on Monday, as the capital eases its Covid-19 curbs. 

About 610 schools —starting from early childhood education (Paud) to high schools— are reopening their doors under strict health protocols.

Not only do these schools have to slash their capacity by half, they also have a limited time duration.

According to Jakarta education office spokesman Taga Radja, the first day back at school ran smoothly. So far, he has yet to receive any report on issues encountered during the in-person schooling.

“Everything is going according to the standard operating procedures that have been decided on assessments 1 and 2, as well as training,” Taga said in Jakarta on Monday, as quoted from Jakarta Globe’s sister publication Beritasatu.

For instance, SDN 15 Cakung Barat —an elementary school in East Jakarta— “got A+” for their protocol compliance.

The students had their temperature checked at the school gates. They washed their hands before entering their classes. In class, students sat 1.5 meters apart from one another.

The kids even brought their own lunch boxes to avoid any crowding during recess.

“The teachers kept the health protocols in place until the end of the school day,” Taga said.

The 610 schools underwent assessments and training prior to the in-person schooling. Of that number, 23 are Islamic schools (madrasah). Elementary schools make up the largest proportion with 324 schools now reopened, the Jakarta education office reported. 

Education Ministry data shows that Jakarta is home to about 5,341 schools.

The students paid great attention to the health protocols. But parents, not so much. Many parents neglected the safety measures by crowding when dropping off or picking up their kids, according to Taga.

“In fact, it is the children that are manageable. The parents are difficult to manage,” he said.

“Those who are picking up [the students from school] must maintain a distance.”


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