The Federal Minister for Education and Professional Training, Shafqat Mahmood, said on Sunday that the government wants the educational institutions to stay open this year, adding that the exams shall be conducted on time. Minister said this in view of the decision taken by the Punjab government to close schools on Monday besides Saturday and Sunday due to the smog situation in the province. There are also concerns among students and parents following the emergence of COVID-19’s highly dangerous Omicron variant. In response to a question, the federal minister said that the country has fought the coronavirus pandemic bravely. He emphasized that the only way to control coronavirus is through vaccination and following the standard operating procedures (SOPs). Meanwhile, the minister said that the federal government is determined to implement the single national curriculum in letter and spirit.