As most schools open, others remain closed amid cleanup

Top News | Stella Wong 20 Nov 2019

Half a million primary and secondary students will go back to school today after a weeklong break brought on by protests.

But some schools where clashes have been fierce and tear gas fired will remain closed, including two of the most prestigious schools - St Mary's Canossian College and Diocesan Girls' School.

Kindergartens, schools for children with physical disability and intellectual disability will open on Monday.

St Mary's Canossian College, near Polytechnic University in Hung Hom, said classes are suspended until Friday due to traffic disruption.

Classes will also remain suspended for the rest of the week at Diocesan Girls' School in Jordan to allow time for cleaning on campus.

The school said a police operation on Monday afternoon made it necessary to engage professionals experienced in removing tear gas and other contaminants.

"They will assess the level of contaminants throughout the campus and conduct thorough cleansing procedures of all venues to ensure that the school remains a safe environment for all students and members of staff," it said.

Methodist College has suspended classes for the rest of the week, as it is also near PolyU and was affected by tear gas.

The school said it takes time for the odor to disperse and it will also invite Food and Environmental Hygiene Department to clean the campus thoroughly.

Classes at the Yaumati Kaifong Association School in Yau Ma Tei will remain suspended for the week.

The Education Bureau announced yesterday that primary, secondary and some special schools will reopen today as "the road and traffic conditions have gradually become stable."

The bureau reminded students to return home as soon as possible and not to wander in the streets after school.

Teddy Tang Chun-keung, chairman of the Hong Kong Association of the Heads of Secondary Schools, said some schools in Yau Tsim Mong district will suspend classes voluntarily due to traffic disruption.

He advised schools to pay attention to students, who may be emotional over the fact that principals picked up more than 300 secondary school students from PolyU yesterday.

Meanwhile, PolyU asked its staff not to come to the campus until December 1, according to sources.

Baptist University advised all students and staff not to come back to the Kowloon Tong main campus today as cleaning and repair work is still under way.

stellast.wong@singtaonewscorp.com

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