Madam Tangoba Abayage, the Upper East Regional Minister, has called on parents to caution their children not to exchange their face masks with their colleagues in school to prevent the spread of the virus.

She said it was important for parents to caution their children to know that the nose masks were for personal use and should not be shared, “Parents should caution their children not to give their nose masks to any other person to put on.”

The Minister made the call when she visited some selected basic schools in the Bolgatanga Municipality to ascertain the level of preparedness of both teachers and pupils for academic activities after about ten months of break following the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Madam Abayage who was in the company of Mr Edward Azure, the Upper East Regional Director of the Ghana Education Service (GES) and some officials of the Service, visited the Bolgatanga Preparatory Primary School, the Anglican Primary School and the Saint Charles Special Needs School.

As part of the visit, Madam Abayage presented some nose masks to the schools and distributed snacks to the children in the three schools.

She urged the pupils to maintain personal hygiene at all times, and ensure they had their nose masks on at all times.

She entreated management of schools to ensure availability of water at all times for the pupils to properly wash their hands regularly.

“I am encouraged by the level of participation of pupils in the schools. We are praying that subsequently, we will be cautious,” she said.

Madam Abayage said for strict adherence to the use of face masks in schools, the GES would have to embark on regular monitoring and was hopeful that these children will go through without any unwanted incident.

The GES Director, Mr Azure said the schools were safe and head teachers and their staff would continue to “Do everything possible to maintain safety in the schools”.

He assured parents that their children were safe, and said the schools were disinfected and teachers underwent training and would be able to handle the children well, “We want to encourage them to continue coming to school, we will do all what it takes to ensure that their stay here is very safe.

“The children are very enthusiastic about coming back to school, and we have encouraged them to observe all the protocols that are put in place to prevent the spread of coronavirus,” Mr Azure said.

According to him, the pupils were aware of the deadly virus, “When we asked them they said they are wearing these face masks because of coronavirus.

“They know that the virus is very deadly, and when they contract it, it has the potential to kill them and their family members. I think the message is going down well with them,” he said.