The Zimbabwe School Examinations Council (ZIMSEC) chairperson Eddie Mwenje said that schools are likely to be opened in September, with public examinations starting in December and ending in January.
Mwenje added that Grade Seven examinations will be written first since the exams body is fully prepared for them. He said:
Schools are likely to be opened in September and the announcement is probably to be made next week (this week).
So, after they have made the announcement, we will then meet with the Ministry (of Primary and Secondary Education) and finalise how learners should catch up. Our thinking is examinations can start in December and overlap into January 2021.
The Grade Seven examinations will be the first examinations since we are now through with preparing for them.
Meanwhile, the Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) president Takafira Zhou said unions have submitted their proposals to Government on the way forward. He said:
We made a two-part proposal to Government for schools to be opened in September or October this year, then schools close in December; then we open early next year, with national examinations written in mid-February to March. Then instead of having three terms, we have two terms.
The other proposal is to have schools open in September or October and then we have a crash programme this year.
Zhou said, however, the opening of schools will largely depend on Government being able to provide a safe environment for teachers and learners amid the coronavirus crisis.
Schools were closed in March when coronavirus was brought into the country and a planned reopening in July was shelved after local transmissions surged.