As governments across the world continue to impose national school closures, schools and nurseries in Singapore will re-open next week as scheduled after the holidays.

The city-state’s Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Family and Social Development said in a joint statement that authorities had put in place enhanced measures, including telling students and teachers not to return to school for two weeks if they had been overseas during the holiday.

The government also suspended extracurricular activities, assigned seating and introduced a cleaning routine in canteens and classrooms, Today Online reported.

This comes as schools have been closed around the world, including in Japan, Hong Kong, Italy and the UK.

Singapore’s education minister Ong Ye Kung said in a Facebook post: “I hate to have to do this, but it is critical that we protect the system and keep everyone who has overseas exposure to the virus away from the school population. Then we can possibly return to the calm we enjoyed before the March school holidays.”

The education minister told CNBC that he could not rule out suspending schools if the coronavirus pandemic intensifies.

Singapore, one of the first places hit by coronavirus, has 243 confirmed cases.

Date published: 20 March 2020

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