More than a thousand schools in 14 provinces have been closed due to ongoing flooding since the Oct 1 start of the new school year, according the Education Ministry. “Even if flooding goes down at some schools, they still cannot open—we’re aware of student’s health, and the schools have to be clean,” Suong Yen, director of the ministry’s construction department, said yesterday. Mr Yen said that a total of 1,305 schools have been closed. “In only two weeks, the number of schools affected by the flooding has increased by 401,” Mr Yen said, adding that when figures were last collected on Sept 29, 904 schools were closed. “If we calculate an average of 300 students in each school, so far, roughly 391,500 can’t go back due to flooding,” estimated Sam Sereyroth, director general of the education department at the ministry. Mr Sereyroth added that the ministry would arrange a meeting between all provincial education department chiefs to find ways to make up for lost school time, including adding time to the school day.