At an event in Klang this weekend, Deputy Education Minister Datuk P. Kamalanathan said that the Ministry of Education will consider temporarily closing schools if the heatwave worsens, according to AsiaOne.
Datuk P. Kamalanathan said that the ministry will make the decision in consultation with the Department of Environment and that the ministry will follow the standards set by the Natural Resource and Environment Ministry (NRE) when deciding on temporary closures, including the NRE’s guide based on the Air Pollutant Index (API) readings in case of haze.
Right now, schools are on a one-week school break and the Deputy Minister urges parents to limit children’s outdoor activities.
When schools reopen next week, Datuk Kamalanathan assured the public that there is an existing ministry standard circular which allows school administrators to limit or stop outdoor activities in school if the situation calls for it. He added that updated information will be sent to Education Department directors who can then advice school principals and headmasters to stop outdoor activities if it gets too hot.
Earlier in the year, Malaysia had its hottest January since 1998 according to the Meterological Department’s (MET) El Nino update on 8th March and even though temperatures have been decreasing since then, the MET department noted that the decrease was slower compared to that in the 1997/1998 El Nino cycle.
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