KUALA LUMPUR: The stage is set for schools across the country to reopen their doors today for pre-schoolers, Year One and Year Two students after they were closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

For students who have not got their uniforms yet, the Education Ministry (MOE) has allowed them to wear everyday clothes for school and the waiver expires on March 26 (when the first term holiday begins).

The reopening of the face-to-face school session, after it was closed nationwide from Nov 9 last year, also sees students and teachers adapting to the new norms and compliance with the standard operating procedures (SOP).

Not taking the SOP aspect lightly, the MOE has distributed the School Reopening Management Guidelines and Models for Pupil Control at School Gates to all schools nationwide.

The guidelines encompass various aspects, from students entering the school gate, while at school, as well as when returning home.

Apart from primary schools, vocational colleges are also open today.

As for Year Three to Year Six students, they will start attending school on March 8, while secondary schools will commence sessions on April 4 (in Johor, Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu) and on March 5 for the other states.

International schools and private educational institutions will reopen on March 8.

However, the face-to-face school session has been postponed to March 14 for schools in Kuching, involving the Samarahan, Julau, Meradong, Sibu, Kapit, Bintulu, Subis and Miri districts, due to the current COVID-19 situation in the affected areas.

Although the COVID-19 situation has yet to subside in Malaysia and there are also some states still under enforcement of the Movement Control Order (MCO), the reopening of the schools is seen as necessary to balance the need for access to education in a safe environment so as to ensure students do not lag behind in their studies.