PESHAWAR: Minister for Federal Education and Professional Training Shafqat Mahmood on Sunday said on-campus classes from grade 01-08 will be suspended till April 28.

The minister shared the decisions taken during a meeting of the health and education ministers of all four provinces and said in a series of tweets that the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) will decide whether this closure be extended further. He said classes from 01-08 will remain closed till Eid, with the details to be provided by provinces later.

The minister said exams for class 09 and 12 will be held after fourth week of the next month. He explained that classes of students of grades 9, 10, 11 and 12 to resume from tomorrow, April 19, onwards.

Universities in affected districts will also remain closed, shift classes will be taken online. O/A level exams to be held as per schedule and Cambridge has assured coronavirus standard operating procedures (SOPs) will be followed strictly during exams.

Shafqat Mahmood said decisions regarding the education process in wake of COVID-19 pandemic, were taken at a special meeting of Health and Education Ministers of all provinces, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan on Sunday with consensus. He said exams for class 9th and 12th will take place according to the new date sheets announced by the education boards.

Shafqat Mahmood said classes from 09th to 12th grade would commence in coronavirus affected districts in a staggered manner to allow students to prepare for board exams. He said university admissions schedule will be adjusted keeping in view the new exam time table.

He said it was also decided with complete consensus among ministers that A, AS, O level and International General Certificate of Secondary Education exams will take place as per date sheet announced by CAIES. He said there will be no delay or cancellation. He said those students wishing to take exams in October or November this year can do so in the same fee already paid.

Shafqat Mahmood said the meeting was also informed that Cambridge has decided not to give teacher assessed grades this year therefore those not taking exams will take them in the next cycle of October and November.

The minister said universities in affected districts will continue online while in districts with less than eight percent positivity they will continue to function.