Mixed reaction from parents on reopening of schools in Coimbatore

One of the consultation meetings held at S.R.P Ammaniammal Girls Higher Secondary School in R.S. Puram in the city on Monday.  


The consultation meetings held in schools across Coimbatore district on Monday regarding reopening of schools on November 16 amid the COVID-19 pandemic elicited mixed response from parents, those familiar to the proceedings said.

Meetings were held in around 540 high and higher secondary schools comprising government, aided and private schools in the district.

According to an official in the Department of School Education, more than half of the parents in many government and aided schools were not in favour of reopening of schools. Many expressed apprehensions regarding possible spike in COVID-19 cases after Deepavali. “The parents said the children may not adhere to the physical distancing norms in the school as they will meet their friends after so many months,” the official said.

However, the rest of the parents were in favour of reopening of government and aided schools. Parents of students studying in Classes X and XII were particularly concerned about the lack of physical classes ahead of public examinations, according to the official.

A headmistress of a government school here said the parents were concerned whether travelling in buses every day to the school would be safe for the children.

R. Visalakshi, president of Tamil Nadu Private Schools Association and correspondent of a private school in Periyanaickenpalayam, said “around 60 % to 65 %” of the parents were not in favour of reopening, according to the meeting in her school. She suggested that the State government consider a phased reopening of schools, with initially allowing only the students of Class X and Class XII to visit the schools on a voluntary basis.

Coimbatore Chief Education Officer P. Usha said there were no issues reported during the consultation meetings from any schools on Monday. The responses of the parents from all the schools would be consolidated and sent to the Department of School Education.

The Coimbatore Corporation, as per the State government instruction, also conducted meetings with parents of students of its high and higher secondary schools.

Corporation Education Officer A. Valliammal, told The Hindu that heads of 12 high and 16 higher secondary schools conducted the meeting on their campus.

The meeting went on from 9.30 a.m. to 1 p.m. After the meeting, the school heads sent their reports directly to the Chief Education Officer. Around 7,300 students are studying in the 28 schools.


In Tiruppur district, the consultation meetings were held in 401 schools. Many government schools in Tiruppur saw 50 % of the parents being in favour of reopening and the other half being against it.


According to officials in the School Education Department in the Nilgiris, there were a total of 217 high schools, higher secondary schools, CBSE, matriculation and government-aided schools and many parents said that they were apprehensive about schools reopening.

S. Ranjini, parent of a Class 10 student studying at a government school near Udhagamandalam, said she did not want the schools to open so close to the Deepavali holidays, as many children may have travelled outside the district or could have had visitors to their home.

(With inputs Karthik Madhavan in Coimbatore and Rohan Premkumar in Udhagamandalam)

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Printable version | Jan 19, 2021 3:06:52 AM |

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