PUTRAJAYA – Schools are encouraged to provide face masks for Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) candidates if the hazy conditions in their areas have reached unhealthy levels.
Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahadzir Khalid said besides this, the ministry was monitoring the Air Pollutant Index (API) readings throughout the country twice a day, morning and afternoon, to ensure a safe environment for schools.
He said the government would only implement follow-up measures if the API readings exceeded 250 (very unhealthy air).
“The Natural Resources and Environment Ministry has reported that the API readings nationwide have been moderate so far, and the UPSR could go on as scheduled.
“We hope the readings will reach healthy levels. We can compromise if needed, but we’ll decide later,” he told reporters after visiting Sekolah Kebangsaan Putrajaya Precinct 8 (1), here, today.
A total of 455,929 candidates sat for the UPSR at 8,134 examination centres nationwide today.
Asked on the API reading in Melaka, Mahadzir said it was at a moderate level currently.
According to the Department of Environment’s website, seven locations recorded unhealthy air levels with API readings of above 100 as at 8am today.
From the latest information on the website, three areas in Negeri Sembilan recorded unhealthy air levels with API readings of 135 (Nilai), 117 (Port Dickson) and 114 (Seremban).
Also recording unhealthy API readings were Melaka City (111), Batu Muda (108) in Kuala Lumpur and Banting (106), Selangor.
Yesterday, Melaka Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron said the state government would close the schools if the haze in the state became serious. – BERNAMA