By Reem Hosam El-din
The new academic year has been postponed until 10 October in the North Sinai towns of Rafah and Sheikh Zuweid , according to a report issued by the North Sinai governorate.
Maintenance works in schools in the two towns was given as the reason for the postponement, according to North Sinai Governor Sayed Abdel-Fatah Harhour.
The academic year begins as usual in all other schools across the governorate, including in Bir El-Abd and Al-Hasna, in addition to the cities of Al-Arish and Nekhel.
The decision to postpone comes after Sheikhs from Bedouin tribes in Sheikh Zuweid met with governorate officials and asked them to postpone the academic year’s commencement, due to the lack of security in the region.
Military forces in North Sinai recently launched a wide-scale operation, known as “Retribution for the Martyr” against “Islamic State” affiliates operating in the restive peninsula. The Egyptian Army announced the end of the operation’s first stage, which had lasted for 16 days, on Tuesday.
The total number of students enrolled at schools in North Sinai this year amounts to 105,598, distributed over 3,668 classes in 574 schools. The number of teachers has reached 8,680, according to the Under-Secretary of North Sinai’s Education Directorate, Laila Mortagi.