Although the two-week closure to prevent any potential outbreak of COVID-19 was made clear in the initial order forcing schools to close, there has been much misinformation and misunderstanding about school closures circulating online, Vice Governor Piyapong explained through a press conference broadcast live through Facebook this morning (Jan 20).
“The order for schools to remain closed expires today, so they may reopen tomorrow,” Mr Piyaphong said
“However, whether or not a school remains closed is a decision for each school. It is their choice,” he explained.
V/Gov Piyapong cited Muang Thalang School as an example.
“The school will remain closed as some students come from Phang Nga to attend classes at the school. The traveling time spent by these students to come to the school is quite long, as they must pass the checking process [at the bridge onto the island],” he said.
Muang Thalang school announced yesterday that the school will remain closed and all students are to continue their classes online. At this stage the school is set to re-open on Feb 1.
V/Gov Piyaphong said, “We are trying to figure out how to make it easier for these students to attend classes at the school.”
Mr Piyaphong urged local reporters and media to post more comprehensive reports to ensure clarity in understanding among the public.
“Some reporters use short phrases such as ‘school closed’ but the details of which school is closed and other details is not taken seriously. Only which school is mentioned, not the other details,” he said.
“Short words make it easy for people to misunderstand.. My new team has had to work so hard to answer questions from student’s parents about this issue.
“Please report the information carefully and correctly. Please do not make people panic,” V/Gov Piyapong said.