Kuwait: Mass layoffs hit private school teachers

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Some private schools in Kuwait have terminated the service of their teachers to avoid paying them during an emergency holiday prompted by an outbreak of the new coronavirus, Kuwaiti newspaper Al Qabas has reported.

Other schools have given their staff the choice of either giving up their salaries or lose their jobs, the paper added, citing well-informed sources.

Administrators of several private schools in the Gulf country notified their employees by phone of ending their services, telling them they could be re-appointed if a specific date is set for resuming the current disrupted school year, or for the onset of the new year, according to the report. No figures for the reported job losses were given.

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“Some schools have become unable to pay the salaries of their staff in the current crisis of class suspension and parents’ refraining from paying the last tranches of fees,” the sources added.

Last March, the Kuwaiti government extended the suspension of classes in all educational institutions until August as part of precautions to contain the novel coronavirus.

Education authorities have demanded schools not to request parents to pay fees at present and delay the issue until early next year, a move reportedly resulting in a financial problem for schools.

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Starting from Sunday, Kuwait shifted to a shorter 10-hour curfew replacing a 6 pm – 6 am curfew that was enforced for the past three weeks, signalling relaxation of anti-virus restrictions.

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