GAZİANTEP, Turkey

Turkey plans to reopen schools on Sept. 6 amid good progress with the country’s vaccination drive, the national education minister said Monday. 

Ziya Selcuk made the announcement while speaking with the Turkish private news channel Haberturk.

Referring to the National Education Ministry’s efforts for allowing students to access online learning during the time schools were closed because of the coronavirus pandemic, Selcuk noted that around 750,000 tablets were distributed to needy students to follow the online classes.

He also noted that around 90% of the teachers in the country have been vaccinated.

Underscoring the importance of interaction between children and animals, Selcuk said that around 20,000 schools now regularly feed dogs.

The country has so far administered over 52.62 million doses since it launched a mass vaccination campaign in January, according to the Health Ministry.

More than 35.88 million people have received their first doses, while over 15.66 million have been fully vaccinated.

The number of people who have received their third COVID-19 vaccine dose crossed 1 million as of Sunday.

Amid a nationwide fall in virus cases and an expedited inoculation drive, Turkey has entered a new normalization phase, lifting almost all virus-related restrictions.

*Writing by Ahmet Gencturk

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