beersheba school rocket 88 248 ap.
(photo credit: AP [file])
Despite the continued rocket attacks, the Home Front Command has given local authorities in the South a green light to gradually reopen schools this week.
Col. Yitzhak Eitan, head of the Home Front Command's Southern District, said a situation analysis found that the threat of rocket attacks had decreased, and that air raid sirens in cities such as Beersheba were now fully functional.
Not all schools would reopen at once, Eitan stressed, saying that some lessons would be held in bomb shelters, while others would be held only in school buildings approved by Home Front Command officials.
Schools with a reinforced, rocket-proof roof, or with a safe room near to pupils could reopen, Eitan said.
The Ashkelon Municipality decided to keep schools shut on Sunday, after two rockets slammed into residential areas, moderately wounding one person.
"We have approved the opening of the schools gradually... it is up to the local councils to decide when this should happen," Eitan said.
Sderot would resume a full school day on Sunday, Eitan added, while regional councils such as Netivot and Eshkol would begin the week with a "minimal" school day.
Children would also drill evacuating their class rooms, Eitan added. The Home Front Command was keen to gradually return life in southern Israel to normal, he stressed.
As for the north, an Education Ministry spokesman for the region told The Jerusalem Post on Saturday night that everything had returned to normal and that school would be held as scheduled throughout the region. He spoke after a meeting of local authorities in Nahariya and Shlomi to assess the situation for the upcoming week, following the firing of Katyushas into the Galilee on Thursday.
Abe Selig contributed to this report