PETALING JAYA: The Education Ministry has spelled out new standard operating procedures (SOPs) amid the haze crisis, which includes giving principals and headmasters autonomy to declare school closures and letting teachers work from home.
Under the new SOPs, school closures must be announced latest by 6pm daily and principals and headmasters can decide whether a school should close based on the day’s Air Pollutant Index (API) reading, with the District Education department also informed of the closure.
“For schools that were declared closed but pupils already in school, the pupils can still stay in school and lessons should go on as usual until the school session ends for the day, unless there are requests by parents to take their children home.
“Teachers are also given the choice to work from home if their schools are closed. Principals and headmasters must ensure that this is done by taking everyone's welfare into account, ” said the Ministry in a statement Wednesday (Sept 18).
It also reiterated its initial announcement that all schools including kindergartens in Selangor, Pulau Pinang, Putrajaya and Kuala Lumpur will be closed for two days from Thursday (Sept 19) to Friday (Sept 20).
“All the schools involved need not replace the missed school days as the school closure was categorised as emergency holiday (cuti bencana), ” said the Ministry, urging school administrators to adhere to the SOPs at all times.
Pupils and teachers are also reminded to prioritise their health, drink lots of water and decrease outdoor activities.
Meanwhile, for higher learning institutes, it is up to their respective administrations to decide on the closures.