VIENTIANE, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- Educational authorities are assessing the readiness of schools in the Lao capital Vientiane to resume face-to-face classes in Grade 5 of primary schools and Grades 4 and 7 of secondary schools following months of closure due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Before they can reopen, all schools must show they can comply with 70 percent or more of 10 measures and 40 recommendations laid down by the Ministry of Education and Sports, local daily Vientiane Times reported on Wednesday.
These measures and recommendations have been introduced to ensure that schools will be safe for both students and staff amid the continuing COVID-19 outbreak.
The recommendations have been circulated to each school and the committees responsible for evaluating schools' preparedness.
The assessment committee has said that any school that does not meet the set criteria must continue to make improvements before being allowed to reopen.
Schools that remain closed should continue online learning in key subjects.
The National University of Laos will resume classes on Monday, with lectures to take place online while practical classes and fieldwork will be taught face-to-face.
All of the university's teaching will take place in line with standard COVID-19 control measures, to ensure that students and staff are safe while lectures go ahead in an organized and unified way.
To further prepare for the reopening of schools, the Lao government has ordered health authorities to vaccinate children aged 12 and older.
The government has instructed line ministries and other involved sectors to push for the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines to ensure that Laos reaches the target to vaccinate at least 80 percent of the population by the end of 2022.