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Schools partially re-open in Sri Lanka

Schools across Sri Lanka have partially re-opened after being shut for nearly three months, as the spread of COVID-19 has been put under control in the island nation, it was reported on Tuesday.

According to the Education Ministry, schools re-opened on Monday for grades 13, 11 and 5, leading to nearly 800,000 students returning back to school across the country, reports Xinhua news agency.

Strict health guidelines were followed as students were subjected to temperature checks, frequent washing of hands, and wearing face masks.

Chairs and desks were kept one meter apart in each classroom and students were informed to speak to each other from a distance.

The Education Ministry said that under the third phase, schools would re-open for grades 10 and 12 students on July 20, and under the fourth stage from July 27, schools would re-open for the rest except for grades 1 and 2.

All sports activities and tests however have been canceled until further notice, the Ministry said.

Sri Lanka has so far reported 2,078 positive COVID-19 patients but has seen an over 90 percent recovery rate with 1,917 patients out of the total detected been successfully treated and discharged.

Active patients are now down to 161, official statistics from the Health Ministry showed.

The deaths stood at 11.

Capital Colombo resumed economic operations at the end of May after being shut for nearly two months to prevent a further spread of the virus, and since then the country has seen the gradual re-opening of several sectors.

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