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So, will schools remain closed or what?

Karachi, Oct 17: Uncertainty prevails amongst school-going children, as schools opening after four days of Eid holidays on Wednesday were worried about whether or not schools will be closed on Thursday - the day PPP leader Benazir Bhutto returns after eight years of self-imposed exile.

Making things worse for parents, teachers and students, is that the answer to this question was not even known to the government, who plans hold a meeting on Wednesday in this regard. The decision of this meeting is slated to be announced late on Wednesday night, compelling parents, teachers and students to wait in the dark.

With the major arteries leading towards the airport expected to remain closed for security reasons and a lack of public transport, most of the educational institutions, which opened on Wednesday having remained closed since the 21st of Ramazan, may be compelled to see another holiday.

The situation for school students would be clearer on Wednesday when they attend schools. The government officials are unclear about the situation. Secretary Education, Subhago Khan Jatoi, when contacted, said that if any decision comes from the high-ups at the chief minister level regarding closure of schools, then his department would be able to make some announcement in this regard.

He, however, said that as all the government and private schools were closed for Eid holidays and all announcements to this effect would be made on Wednesday and that too after the chief minister's decision.

When asked about the absence of transport on the day, he simply replied he is not in a position to comment on this. Only chief minister's orders would be obeyed.

Parents were quite sceptical, saying that such situations occured off and on, constantly disturbing the academic schedule, and were of the opinion no matter what the situation, educational institutions should never be closed. They felt it was the responsibility of the government to provide protection to schools.

Some of them said that even political parties should plan in such a manner that their programmes do not affect students. They said parents were only concerned about the law and order situation and if that is maintained they would not be worried.

Unfortunately, they said, neither political parties nor government officials have ever thought of the students who suffered at the hands of these people. Already at the lowest rung, the country's education sector suffered even more because of such unannounced plans, they said.

The government, they said, must chalk out plans and measures to be taken so that studies were not hindered at any cost. The News

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