All schools in India were shut since mid-March in view of the coronavirus pandemic. According to reports, the central government is considering to reopen schools and educational institutes but the decision will be left to the respective state governments so as to decide when and how to restart the classroom teaching.
Many states are reviewing the possibility of reopening the schools which includes Assam, Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal and Goa. However majority of parents have opposed the idea of reopening of schools.
The Central government plans to reopen schools and educational institutes phase-wise across the country, between September 1 and November 14. According to a report in ET, the issue has been discussed by the group of secretaries attached to the Group of Ministers on Covid-19 management, headed by health minister Harsh Vardhan.
What does the Centre’s formulation of opening schools and educational institutes say?
The formulation states that for the first fifteen days of the opening of schools, Class 10 and Class 12 students will be asked and guided to attend the school. Afterwards, the students of Class 6 to 9 will be brought back to the classrooms with restricted hours.
Check out the state-wise status regarding the reopening of educational institutions in India
The final decision on reopening of schools in Assam will be taken after August 25. Education Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma said, “We are ready to open the schools from September 1. The teachers are getting their COVID-19 tests done. We have been receiving feedback from the people. But the task force will discuss the matter on August 25 and 26.”
"We will analyse the suggestions that we are receiving from people. We will also take up the matter with the MHA. The final decision will be taken after August 25,” he added.
The final decision on reopening of schools in Madhya Pradesh will be taken after reviewing the covid-19 situation in the state, said Chief Minister Shiv Raj Singh Chouhan.
He further added that the state government has made arrangements for children’s education online and through radio programmes etc. Along with this, food grain is being sent home to children of Classes I to VIII for mid-day meal and the amount of food security allowance is also being sent to their accounts.
The final decision on reopening of schools in Uttar Pradesh government has not been taken yet. It has not taken any decision regarding guidelines pertaining to reopening of schools.
Schools, colleges, and all educational institutions will remain closed till the aforementioned date.The Bihar government last week extended the lockdown in the state to September 06.
According to the state government's lockdown order, schools will remain closed till August 31 until further order. It is likely to be extended further.
Tamil Nadu government has not decided yet on re-opening of schools in the state. School Education Minister K A Sengottaiyan last week said Chief Minister K Palaniswami would take a final call on the issue.
The final decision on reopening of schools in Meghalaya is yet to be taken. The sate government says it is too early to predict when the schools will re-open since the Centre had directed all educational institutions to remain closed till August 31.
Lahkmen Rymbui, the education minister of Meghalaya, said the Centre is closely monitoring the situation and the Meghalaya government will be duly informed if the Centre comes out with the notification on the re-opening of schools.
Schools and colleges will remain closed till August 31 and may be extended further. Whenever the schools reopen in the state face masks will be mandatory for all students and it will be a part of the uniform for Punjab government school children from Class I to VIII. The school education department has said it would provide two masks for each student along with the school uniform.
A parents-teachers meeting was organized in Himachal Pradesh to understand the parents view regarding re-opening of schools. According to the meeting held majority parents were not in favour of opening schools.
Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia has said Delhi will not reopen its schools any time soon as the state government is not willing to take any risk with the health of children. "There are 4.4 million students in Delhi (including both private and government schools) and about 800,000 to one million college students. We cannot think about it (reopening of schools and colleges) for a few months," he was quoted as saying by Economic Times.
The lockdown in the state has been extended till August 31 as per which all schools, educational institutes and colleges remain closed. The final decision of the school reopening date will be announced by September 5, 2020.