South Korea starts online teaching

Source:Reuters Published: 2020/3/31 17:53:42

South Korean soldiers wearing protective gear spray disinfectant on the street to help prevent the spread of the COVID-19, at Gangnam district in Seoul on Thursday. South Korea's total number of novel coronavirus cases - the largest outside China - rose above 6,000. Photo: AFP

South Korea said on Tuesday it will open school classes online next week and reschedule its annual college entrance exams slated for November as concerns persist over the coronavirus and small outbreaks continue to emerge.

The country has postponed the beginning of all schools' new semester three times from early March to April 6 amid a rise in confirmed virus patients.

After a big early outbreak, South Korea has largely managed to bring down its daily number of new cases to around 100 or less, but infections from small clusters including churches, hospitals and nursing homes, as well as imported cases, continue to arise.

Prime Minister Chung Sye-kyun said the country is not ready yet to open schools as before despite the government's efforts to prevent the spread of the virus.

"We regret that we have not reached levels where children can go to schools safely even though we mobilized all our capabilities to substantially decrease risks of infection," Chung said.

Schools will provide online classes starting April 9, Chung said, vowing to ensure students' access to technology at home to minimize any study gap. The highly competitive annual college entrance exam will need to be postponed.



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