5.5 million pupils go back to school

Students and teachers celebrate the start of the new academic year in a school in Abha. More than 258,000 boys and girls attended school in the Asir region on Sunday.

Students and teachers celebrate the start of the new academic year in a school in Abha. More than 258,000 boys and girls attended school in the Asir region on Sunday.

Schools in the Kingdom received 5.55 million students on the first day of the school year on Sunday, said the Ministry of Education.

There were 2,834,796 girls and 2,718,762 boys, according to the ministry figures.

Kindergarten students accounted for 182,556 of this number, while there were 2,570,334 elementary students and 1,230,577 intermediate students.
Secondary students numbered 1,214,084, in addition to 24,751 students in special education and 51,903 students in adult education.

The students were received by 525,615 teachers, of whom 245,842 where male and 300,750 were women. There are currently 18,710 girls schools and 16,039 boys schools.

The Ministry of Education has completed all preparations for the new school year in accordance with the instructions of Minister of Education Prince Khaled Al-Faisal.

The ministry has commissioned a central committee represented by the different departments in the ministry to follow up its activities and connect with all other committees in the various educational directorates around the Kingdom.

Prince Khaled had said it was important to prepare early for the school year and that all school buildings should provide to students a clean environment in accordance with the highest standards.

The minister added that these requirements were outlined in a royal decree issued in support of the SR80 billion King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Project for the Development of Public Education.

Prince Khaled also said it was important cleaning contracts signed with specialized companies were implemented and that schools benefiting from these contracts should not receive a separate budget for cleaning services.

Schools not included in these contracts will continue to receive a budget of SR100 and SR200 monthly to clean each classroom during a school term.

They will receive a minimum budget of SR1,500 a month.

The ministry had asked all educational directorates to submit information about the availability of land plots for the purpose of constructing educational projects in line with its plans.

Schools operating in rented buildings will receive priority, followed by current joint schools and then night schools.

Rented schools account for 30 percent of total schools. The number of girls schools is 10 percent higher than boys schools.

Meanwhile, the head of the safety and security department at the Ministry of Education, Dr. Majed Al-Harbi, said there are plans to classify schools into three categories according to the quality of their safety and security measures.

“Schools will be classified into safe and secure schools, schools that need some work and modifications and schools that are facing difficulties in their safety and security measures,” he said.

He pointed out the ministry has sent out e-forms to all schools during the second term of the last school year to self-assess their safety and security measures. He said the responses would allow the ministry to form a clear picture regarding the schools’ situations and help correct any shortcomings.


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