National / Social Issues

80% of Kumamoto schools to resume classes Tuesday after quakes

Kyodo

About 80 percent of public schools in Kumamoto Prefecture will have resumed classes by May 10 after their buildings were damaged or used as evacuation centers after last month’s powerful earthquakes, local authorities said Tuesday.

Of the 401 elementary, junior high and high schools as well as other educational facilities in Kumamoto, classes will be restarted at 322 following confirmation of building safety, resumption of water and other essential utilities and declines in the number of evacuees, the prefectural education board and the Kumamoto city government said.

The remaining 79 schools in Kumamoto have yet to decide when to reopen. They include those in areas hardest hit by magnitude-6.5 and magnitude-7.3 quakes on April 14 and 16, respectively.

As for schools whose buildings have been deemed in danger of collapsing, the local authorities are planning to rent rooms nearby to be used as classrooms or build makeshift school buildings.

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