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Coronavirus

Singapore primary schools to go online as COVID cases rise

Home-based learning edict comes as national exam bears down on students

Kiera Arwen Ong, 11, and her siblings do their schoolwork at home in May. Another COVID surge will keep Singapore pupils home again.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- Primary schools here will shift to home-based learning for 10 days ahead of a key national examination, the education ministry said on Saturday, as the country reported 935 new COVID-19 cases the previous day, the highest since April last year.

Primary 1 to 5 students will move to home-based learning from Sept. 27 to Oct. 6.

Primary 6 students will go on a study break for a few days from Sept. 25 before sitting for the national examination to minimize risk of school-based transmissions and reduce the number of students placed in quarantine.

"With the PSLE (Primary School Leaving Examination) written paper examinations approaching, we will undertake further measures to protect students who are not yet medically eligible for vaccination and give parents and students greater peace of mind," said Education Minister Chan Chun Sing.

A recent rise in cases after the relaxation of some COVID-19 measures has prompted Singapore to pause on further reopening. More than 80% of its population has been vaccinated against COVID-19.

The country is looking at vaccinating children under 12 years in early 2022.

(Reuters)

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