Jaipur, September 1: Government and private schools were reopened for classes 9 to 12 in Rajasthan on Wednesday, after being shut for over four months following a spike in cases in the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The turnout, however, was not high on the first day as online classes are also being held simultaneously.
According to guidelines issued by the education department, classes with only 50 per cent strength are allowed at a time with a strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols. Many students came to schools accompanied by their parents, some of whom were seen enquiring about the arrangements for safety of their children.
“The number of students who came on the first day was almost half of the permissible number, but those who came were cheerful and excited. We have asked them to not be overexcited and follow all protocols in view of their own safety,” Sumita Minhas, Principal of Podar World School, Jaipur, told PTI. First Day at School Delayed for 140 Million Children Around the World Due to COVID-19: UNICEF.
She said parents were apprised of protocols on sanitisation, seating arrangements, and other guidelines in advance, and their written consent was taken. Hemraj Sharma, a government school sanskrit teacher in Thikariya, Ajmer Road, said that all preparations were made before the school was opened.
“We have already received written consent from parents of more than half of the students of class 9 and 10. All classrooms have been sanitised and seating arrangements done according to government guidelines,” he said. Another teacher of the school, Sheetal Kumari, said online classes will continue even though schools are opened. Yoga activities for a few minutes have been planned in classrooms for students, she added.
According to the standard operating procedure issued last week, the department has kept separate timings for arrival and departure of students of different classes so that there is no large gathering at one time. School syllabus has also been cut by 30 per cent. Schools in Delhi Reopen for Classes 9 to 12 Today Adhering to COVID-19 Protocols (See Pics).
“Due to the COVID-19 infection in the last three months, classes in schools could not start due to which studies of the students have been disrupted. Also, there is a need to reduce the curriculum by 30 per cent in all the schools of the state. The decision has been made,” School Education Minister Govind Singh Dotasra said on Tuesday.