The National Examination and School Inspection Authority (NESA) has denied reports stating that 54 schools have been suspended. They assert that these reports were misunderstood and reassure the public by confirming that the schools in question are still functioning.In an interview with The New Times, Vianney Augustine Kavutse, the Head of the Department of Basic Education and TVET Quality Assurance at NESA, emphasised that conducting inspections is a fundamental part of their mandate. He disclosed that during the previous academic year, the 54 schools in question were evaluated and given recommendations to help improve the quality of education they offer, but not suspended.ALSO READ: Academic year set to commence on September 25“Private schools in Rwanda are granted accreditation to operate. To ensure the renewal of their accreditation, NESA conducts inspections. Based on their findings on the ground, the schools receive recommendations for necessary changes. This allows the schools to continue operating while simultaneously addressing the recommended improvements,” he said.Kavutse explained that schools should be granted accreditation on varying timelines like one to three years, depending on how they operate, among other factors.ALSO READ: Govt clears air on allegations of leaked examsHe pointed out that, for instance, if a school offers tailoring as a faculty and an inspection reveals that out of 50 machines, only 20 are operational, they should be granted short-term accreditation, such as one year, to allow them to acquire new machines without necessitating a shutdown or suspension of the school.Furthermore, he emphasised that inspections include multiple categories, including infrastructure and materials, among others. In instances where the school fails to adhere to the recommendations, the specific programme might be suspended, and students subsequently transferred to other schools.ALSO READ: Inside NESA’s national examination marking centresKavutse, further pointed out that regarding public schools, it's important to note that they do not undergo accreditation processes. However, inspections are carried out as well. In the event of any necessary changes, the inspection team communicates with the relevant institutions, such as the Rwanda Basic Education Board (REB), depending on the category of the school, and the team keeps on conducting inspections in both private and public schools.Meanwhile, countrywide, students kicked off a new academic year on Monday, September 25. The first term will have 13 weeks, and each of the remaining two terms will have 12 weeks.