Hanoi's kindergartens, primary schools shut amid cold wave

By Thanh Hang, Binh Minh, Duong Tam   January 22, 2024 | 07:42 pm PT
Hanoi's kindergartens, primary schools shut amid cold wave
Students arrive at the Marie Curie School of Hanoi on the morning of Jan. 23, 2024. Photo by VnExpress/Ngoc Thanh
More than ten kindergartens and primary schools in Hanoi let students stay at home on Tuesday as the city's temperatures have dipped below 10 degrees Celsius.

Hanoi recorded a low of 9.9 degrees Celsius at 6 a.m. on Tuesday as a severe cold wave has been assaulting northern Vietnam, plunging temperatures in the plains below 10 degrees Celsius and in mountainous areas below zero at night and early in the morning.

According to guidelines from Hanoi's Department of Education and Training, elementary students are allowed to skip school when temperatures fall below 10 degrees Celsius, and secondary students can do so if temperatures drop below 7 degrees.

The department advises schools to adjust class timings flexibly under cold conditions, even when temperatures are above these thresholds.

Thanh Xuan Trung Elementary School in Thanh Xuan District was among the first to announce a day off for students due to the cold wave. However, the school has made provisions for students who cannot be supervised at home, offering care from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Kien Hung Elementary School and Van Khe Elementary School in Ha Dong District have suspended classes, with a directive for schools to stay open for students needing supervision.

Tran Thi Quyen, Principal of Van Khe Elementary School, said that the school would maintain daycare operations to assist families who need it. The school may also switch to online classes if cold conditions persist, reminiscent of strategies adopted during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In Dong Da District, Trung Tu Elementary School has allowed over 1,500 students to remain at home due to the cold. Principal Nguyen Thi Thanh Ha said that since the start of winter, the school has reminded parents to keep their children warm, and follow weather reports.

Trung Van Elementary School in Nam Tu Liem District has let students to stay home but study online.

"The school is also prepared for more online teaching if the cold weather continues," Principal Giang Thanh Thuy said.

Several other primary schools in Gia Lam, Ha Dong and Thanh Tri Districts have also let students stay at home on Tuesday morning.

Some other schools in Hanoi delayed the start of classes by 15-60 minutes.

Nhan Chinh Elementary School in Thanh Xuan District announced that on days with temperatures below 10 degrees Celsius, classes start at 9 a.m., about an hour later than usual.

The Hanoi's education department requires that on cold days, schools should not require students to wear uniforms, avoid outdoor activities, and focus on keeping students warm.

Kindergartens must ensure enough warm water for children.

Many schools in Phu Tho, Hai Phong and Bac Ninh in the northern region have also given students a day off on Tuesday due to the cold weather.

The National Center for Hydrometeorological Forecasting reported that the cold spell will last until Jan. 28, with the lowest temperature in the northern delta being 7-10 degrees Celsius and sub-zero in high mountains.

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