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A Sekolah Kebangsaan Penaga student gets ready to return to school in Penang March 1, 2021. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin
A Sekolah Kebangsaan Penaga student gets ready to return to school in Penang March 1, 2021. — Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

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KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 12 — All children returning to school on October 3 are required to wear face masks, says Education Minister Datuk Radzi Jidin.

He said masks are compulsory for all students while on school grounds, and that they will be provided to those who cannot afford them.

“Some are poor and unable to afford masks, so we are asking the schools to supply them. The teachers will be in charge of this.

“Also, we are suspending all co-curriculum activities, as well as not allowing children to eat in air-conditioned classrooms. They can have their recess in the classroom, but it must be well ventilated,” he said during a press conference today.

Apart from that, physical education (PE) and health classes will be allowed only on condition that the students come to school in their PE attire. This is to discourage students from congregating in changing rooms, he added.

In addition, the ministry is allowing students to attend school in their regular clothes.

Radzi said in light of the pandemic, many families cannot afford new uniforms, while for the ones who can, their children may have outgrown their clothes and they haven’t been able to buy new ones.

“Hence, we think it best to allow them to come to school in regular clothes as long as it is appropriate.

“Many might have outgrown their uniforms, they might be worn out or they cannot afford new ones due to various factors stemming from the pandemic. Just don’t let it get out of hand and turn into a fashion show,” he added.

“The aim is to encourage them to return to school and catch up on education, not punish them.”

Schools are set to reopen in all states, apart from those still in Phase 1 of the National Recovery Plan, on October 3.

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