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Africa: Only 1 in 3 countries ready to receive children safely in schools

3 weeks ago
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UNICEF calls on governments to accelerate a safe re-opening of schools for all children, with clear public health, hygiene and sanitation safeguards in place.

UNICEF calls on Ministries of Education and Finance today to prioritize education in their COVID-19 recovery plans to reduce the negative impact of the COVID-19 crisis on children and national economies.

New data from UNICEF on progress and perspectives for the re-opening of schools in West and Central Africa shows that, six months from the onset of the pandemic, which forced all countries across West and Central Africa to close their schools in response to governments’ COVID-19 lockdown measures, only seven out of 24 countries in the region – Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Chad, Congo, Equatorial Guinea and Sierra Leone – have been able to get their schools ready and reopen their school doors to welcome their children back to school for the new academic year 2020-2021.

UNICEF calls on the remaining 17 countries to accelerate their efforts to make schools physically ready for safe re-opening, including providing water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), making use of available physical spaces for a safer learning environment and using flexible blended learning approaches.

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