MILLIONS of pupils are expected to head back to school tomorrow for the beginning of the second term.

The Department of Basic Education said it was ready to welcome teachers, staff and pupils.

With Covid-19 still in our midst, the department expected schools to continue applying the rotational approaches as it intensified its implementation of the safety campaign aimed at saving lives and livelihoods.

This would see some pupils reporting to school two or three days a week.

“Health and safety protocols remain in place with social distancing, washing of hands and sanitising being the basic hygiene practices that must still be adhered to at all times.

The department is currently investigating the possibility of returning all learners at primary school level due to the learning losses suffered as a result of the pandemic,” read the department’s statement.

The Council of Education Ministers was to also consider the matter this week, and make the announcement on the outcome in due course.

In the first term, the sector experienced several tragedies that led to the loss of lives. Bullying and violence at schools became an issue that had to be addressed.

The department was also preparing for a vaccination programme that would target citizens over the age of 60 and employees at risk (40 years and above, starting with those who are 60 and above, including teachers), who had been identified as essential workers.

Parents and guardians of pupils would then be required to register as part of the preparation for the vaccine programme to be rolled out in a date to be announced by the Department of Health.