As many as 752 new cases of the novel coronavirus were detected across the country over the last 24 hours, bringing the national tally of infections to 304,386. According to the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), nine more people died from the highly contagious disease, taking the death toll from the virus to 6,408. A total of 33,865 samples were tested during the previous 24 hours, out of which 752 turned out to be positive. Thus far, 291,683 people have recuperated from the infection as the number of active cases stands at 6,295. At least 514 more Covid-19 patients recovered from the disease during the past 24 hours.Global coronavirus cases exceeded the 30 million mark, according to a running tally by US-based Johns Hopkins University. The number of deaths from the virus has reached 943,203, with recoveries topping 20.39 million. The US remains the worst-hit country with over 6.66 million infections, while its death toll exceeds 197,500. At least 34 students have tested positive for COVID-19 during the past three days in Punjab. Punjab Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department confirmed that 34 pupils have been diagnosed with the novel coronavirus since the reopening of schools in the province. A spokesperson of the Primary and Secondary Healthcare Department said that 24 students were tested positive for Covid-19 in Gujranwala, seven in Nankana Sahib and one in Bhakkar. He maintained that two staffers were also diagnosed with the virus in Lodhran and Bhakkar.Sindh Education Minister Saeed Ghani on Friday announced that the resumption of school classes for students of grade six until eight, scheduled for Monday, will be delayed by a week after schools were observed not fully following coronavirus health guidelines. He said the government realises the academic losses suffered by students due to closure of schools, but stressed that their health could not be compromised to compensate for the loss of learning. Ghani said the classes that were slated to resume on Monday (Sept 21) will be pushed back to Sept 28, if the situation concerning the virus improves. “But if the situation remains the same, we might review the decision on Sept 28 again.”Federal Minister for Education Shafqat Mahmood, however, said the reopening of schools for sixth, seventh, and eighth-graders across the country will go on as planned. He said that the timetable announced in the inter-provincial meeting of education ministers would be implemented. “We will meet in the National Command and Operations Centre on 22nd to decide finally but if the current trend remains, no reason to postpone 6 to 8 opening on 23rd September,” he added. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) minister Shaukat Yousafzai on Friday hinted at reviewing the decision for reopening educational institutions if a spike is seen in Covid-19 cases. Yousafzai said in a statement that they cannot put the lives of students in danger and a unanimous decision will be made for educational institutions after witnessing a rise in Covid-19 cases. “It had been decided to reopen educational institutions in phases in order to observe the rate of Covid-19 spread. We will take strict action against the education centres involved in the violation of standard operating procedures (SOPs).”Around 13 more educational institutions have been closed across the country in last 24 hours due to non-compliance of health guidelines and protocols and disease prevalence. The educational institutions that had been shut due to no compliance were 10 in KP and three in Sindh, said the National Command and Operation Center (NCOC) in a media release.Special Assistant to Prime Minister on National Health Services, Regulations and Coordination Dr Faisal Sultan on Friday visited various schools of Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT) to examine the observance of standard operating procedures (SOPs) related with protection from the Covid-19. During his visit to educational institutions, he also examined the arrangements made by the school and college administrations to ensure observance of SOPs issued by the government on coronavirus. On the occasion, Dr Faisal Sultan said that the government has decided to have strict monitoring of schools and colleges after re-opening of educational institutions in the country.He said that the government has already taken effective measures as per its strategy to control COVID-19. He added it is the responsibility of the government to protect school children from coronavirus.