MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 14th January, 2021) All the pupils studying in Moscow will return to schools on January 18 after a long period of winter holidays and distance learning, imposed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin announced on Thursday.
In late September, Sobyanin announced that the fall school holidays would be extended through October 18 due to a surge in the coronavirus infections. After that, elementary and 5th grade pupils returned to schools, while elder students continued to study from home. In late December, the mayor announced that the winter vacation in city schools would be extended through January 17.
"The epidemiological situation in Moscow remains uncertain ... On the one hand, thanks to the holidays and a two-fold decrease in public transport passenger traffic, many chains of coronavirus spreading were broken. Vaccination is gaining momentum. Several thousands Muscovites are vaccinated every day. On the other hand, there has not yet been a tangible decrease in hospitalization rate ... Having weighed all pros and cons and having held consultations with doctors, we made the following decisions: starting Monday, January 18, 2021, grade 1-11th students will return to school and resume their regular studies," Sobyanin wrote in his personal blog, adding that their transport cards would be unblocked.
All the other restrictions (including distance learning in universities) will be extended for one week, Sobyanin went on to say.
"If the situation does not deteriorate and we see steady stabilization of the current incidence level, we will consider the possibility to ease some other restrictions," Sobyanin announced.
The mayor called on Moscow residents to be cautious, respect the social distancing rules, wear masks and not to hesitate to vaccinate.