Egypt's health ministry has announced that the start of the next academic period may be delayed due to a recent outbreak of swine flu across the country.
Currently on a mid-year break, schools were scheduled to resume on 22 February. However, the schools' reopening could be postponed if the death toll from the H1N1 virus continues to climb higher.
So far 24 have died from the virus, with another 195 reported to have suffered from swine flu-related respiratory problems, according to a health ministry announcement last Tuesday.
Speaking with Al-Ahram's Arabic news website, health ministry spokesman Ahmed Helmi said that the education ministry was revaluating the situation and that it would err on the side of caution, preferring to prolong the break out of concern for students' safety.
The mid-year break has already been prolonged once by the education ministry, following clashes in late January between security forces and supporters of ousted president Mohamed Morsi.