Amidst the growing concern of coronavirus spread, many educational institutes around the globe have made the difficult decision to call off classes – keeping over 300 million children out of schools.
When the initial few cases of coronavirus were detected, only a few schools in China were cancelled. However, the virus spread so quickly that now over 22 countries have sealed their educational premises for time indefinite. However, most schools will remain close for much of March.
These countries include China, Italy, South Korea, Iran, Japan, France, Kuwait, UAE, Pakistan, India, and some schools of UK and USA.
Pakistan had suspended all flights to Iran and closed land borders with its neighbour, officials confirmed on Friday March 6, after Islamabad detected its first two coronavirus cases
Parents all over the world are concerned how closing the schools would help minimize the spread of the virus. Children are also anxious about the prolonged stay at home while many working parents are forced to take leaves from their work in order to take care of children.
Some research shows that closing down schools may be helpful as children take the hardest hit during such breakouts. In fact, a study by BJMOpen shows that school closure can prevent the transmission of influenza-like symptoms.
Analysis in Hong Kong and Peru has also seen lower transition rates when schools were closed down for at least 15 days.
School authorities are making every effort to keep the learning continue for their students – even when they are home. Besides online classes for older children, many schools are offering worksheets and learning materials available on their websites.
At least one school in Hong Kong has also started a physical education class via the internet where students have to follow their PE teacher’s movements on screen. The Iranian government has also made internet free for children material to aid the educational departments.
With over 4,000 deaths from the illness, the situation is already out of control. Keeping children at home may be a problematic situation for many but it may help restrain some spread.
What measures Pakistan has taken to fight corona Virus
Pakistan had suspended all flights to Iran and closed land borders with its neighbour, officials confirmed on Friday, March 6, after Islamabad detected its first two coronavirus cases, both people who had recently traveled to the Islamic Republic. Dr. Zafar Mirza said that both of the patients are in stable condition and other suspects have tested negative. Flights to and from China, the epicenter of the deadly outbreak, and Afghanistan, which also detected its first case this week, were still operating, however, and their land borders with Pakistan were also open.
Novel Coronavirus: An epidemic lethal virus
The virus has now killed more than 4000 people and infected more than 83,000 worldwide, with an increasing number of new cases being reported each day. New infections have slowed in China, which has nearly 2,800 deaths out of nearly 79,000 cases.
However, Iran has emerged as a new hot spot for the virus, with at least 26 deaths and more than 245 infections so far. There are growing fears in Pakistan — sandwiched between China and Iran — over how the country would deal with the outbreak.