Israeli students head back to school in town ravaged by Hamas

Connie Queline

Israeli students head back to school in town ravaged by Hamas

SDEROT: Cheerful music welcomed children apprehensively returning to school amid heavy security on Sunday in Sderot, one of the Israeli towns near the Gaza border attacked by Hamas on Oct. 7.
Gunfire could be heard from the direction of Gaza, just a few kilometres away, as education officials said thousands of children are set to return this week to Sderot schools, after Israel’s military said it was safe for them to do so.
“Very, very scary, but the children are strong and practiced. There is also security here, we’re being secured, soldiers, and it will be okay,” said Eti Irfan, one of the parents outside an elementary school in town.
Sderot, which for years has been a frequent target of Palestinian rocket attacks, was one of the larger towns targeted by Hamas in the cross-border attack that sparked the war which has been raging in Gaza for nearly five months.
It was the site of major street battles as Israeli forces tried to retake control from the Palestinian militant group.
“There is still fear of occasional shooting but the IDF promised that people can return to Sderot. Together with the mayor, together with the residents who I think really want to come back, we open Sderot’s education system for all children,” said Education Minister Yoav Kisch.
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