Lae schools shut down

Main Stories, National


ALL schools in Lae city closed for a day yesterday after they banned their students from buying prepared food being served by mothers in the schoolyard markets.
The precautionary measure was issued separately by all schools a day after one school had closed and then reopened to continue classes amid heightened fears of the cholera outbreak.It could not be established late last night whether an order was issued by the Provincial Education Division or board.
But students, teachers and parents throughout the city were awaiting advice from the Morobe provincial education board and the programme adviser.Students from St Martins, Hounville and Amba primary schools and Bugandi and Bumayong secondaries reported yesterday that at least a student each had been suspected of cholera.One school rushed nine students to the Medecines Sans Frontieres (MSF) quarantine centre at the Angau Memorial Hospital yesterday.
Students in other districts were also warned in a massive anti-cholera campaign to take precautions.
Finschhafen Vocation had been closed because of fears.
In the city, classes at the Markham Road Primary school closed on Monday.
Classes resumed yesterday but the 600 students were told by teachers that they could suspend classes anytime.
It is understood programme adviser Murika Bihoro would make a statement today.
By midday yesterday students from Bumayong and Bugandi secondary schools and St Martins were told go home.
At all schools, the students were scared of using the ablution blocks.
They were also scared of sharing anything, including bus fare, as they feared the coins would be infected.
They were also scared of using the schools’ public telephones.
Grades Three to Six students at the Catholic church-run St Martins Primary School at Milfordhaven were told to go home after it was reported that cholera had been suspected at the Aigris Market near the estuary of the Markham River.
A large number of the school’s students come from the area.
At Malahang Technical Secondary, the students were scared of going to school because they were seeing settlers from the Bumbu, where three people had reportedly died of cholera, going to the Malahang market.
Parents feared for the safety of their children and called on the Education division to suspend classes.