For school teacher Prince Asante, going back to work on Monday was a huge relief after being out of a job for nearly a year, sidelined by the coronavirus pandemic.
“It was really difficult for me to survive,” Asante admitted.
“I became an Uber driver and on weekends I helped my wife with her small business selling clothes to survive. Things were not easy.”
The West African country introduced a lockdown and closed schools in March after the first confirmed COVID-19 case in sub-Saharan Africa was confirmed in neighbouring Nigeria and eventually spread to Ghana.
In the coastal capital Accra, the lockdown was lifted in April but strict measures to help contain the spread of the virus remained in place.
After a 10-month closure, children wearing face masks flocked to the gates of Asante’s Christ Vision School with mini hand-sanitisers attached to their school bags.
“I’m happy to see my friends but I’m scared. We can’t do most of the things we used to do anymore. I doubt school will be fun like it used to be,” said primary school student Anita Gyampo.
Despite mixed feelings, many are glad the days of homeschooling and virtual classes are over — for the time being