Attendance rate at schools drop after CNY holiday

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SJK(C) Chung Hwa Kota Kinabalu’s attendance rate only 36 per cent on Monday.

KOTA KINABALU (Feb 7): Primary schools and kindergartens under the Kota Kinabalu Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KKCCCI) reported a drastic drop in attendance rate after the Chinese New Year (CNY) break compared to the reopening of schools in January this year.

For instance, SJK(C) Chung Hwa Kota Kinabalu that previously recorded 86 per cent attendance when schools reopened on January 10 saw only 36 per cent of its pupils returning to class on Monday.

The attendance rate for SJK(C) Chung Hwa Likas, SJK(C) Hwa Shiong Putatan and SJK(C) Che Hwa Kolombong has also dropped to between 45 and 68 per cent compared to between 78 and 86 per cent last month.

Meanwhile, the attendance rate has decreased to 42 per cent for Penampang Chung Hwa Kindergarten and 52 per cent for Likas Chung Hwa Kindergarten, whereas Putatan Hwa Shiong Kindergarten saw an increase to 75 per cent.

KKCCCI president Datuk Michael Lui said the low attendance rate was understandable as parents were not willing to expose their children to the risk of contracting Covid-19.

He said the Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin had stated that Malaysia was now experiencing the full Omicron wave, with new cases expected to hit 15,000 soon or even up to 30,000 a day.

In view of the recent trend of Covid-19 infecting young children and clusters involving education institutions, Lui urged parents to step up their precautionary measures to protect their children against the virus.

He also called on parents to get their children vaccinated to prevent the pandemic from worsening.

He said the high number of cases involving children could be due to their unvaccinated status and lack of awareness on maintaining physical distancing.

As such, Lui said parents should guide their children on the correct way to wear face mask and the importance of physical distancing, while those who are eligible should be inoculated as soon as possible to reduce the severity of the symptoms if infected.