Other States

Schools reopen in Odisha

A teacher checks the temperature of a Class 10th student as she enters a school after a long gap in Bhubaneswar on July 26, 2021.   | Photo Credit: BISWARANJAN ROUT

Schools across Odisha reopened on Monday after months of closure due to the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.

With COVID-19 situation gradually improving in the State, the Odisha government had announced the resumption of classes of Class X and XII.

According to Satyabrata Sahu, School and Mass Education Secretary, school education had been impacted due to the pandemic in two back to back academic sessions.

Moreover, the online classes were not effective, as only 40% students could be reached through the mode.

The situation had deteriorated in interior pockets, especially the tribal dominated districts, where access to Internet connectivity and ability to purchase smartphones remained a nagging issue.

Precautions

Both private and government high school managements have been asked to open the institutions by following COVID-19 precautions. However, students are required to take the consent of their parents prior to attending physical classes.

The decision to open schools evoked an encouraging response. On the first day, more than 50% of attendance was noticed in most schools. The school timing has been scheduled from 10 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. to enable students have their lunch at home.

Prior to the reopening, schools were sanitised and seating rearrangement was carried out as part of the standard operating procedure issued by the government.

The ST and SC department, which manages 1734 residential schools across the State, has reopened schools and hostels. They were closed from April 17, when the second wave started peaking.

Meanwhile, the government has announced the vaccination of teachers on a priority basis in view of the gradual opening of schools. According to an announcement made earlier by the School and Mass Education Department, steps could be taken to open schools for Class IX from August 16 if the situation improved. Similarly, the department is contemplating to open schools for Class XI after September 15, when new admissions would have been completed. The Board of Secondary Education had announced results of this year’s Class X students by taking their performances into consideration.

The daily COVID-19 cases have remained below 2000 in the State for the past two weeks. The daily caseload was once hovering over 10,000-mark.


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Printable version | Sep 20, 2021 5:52:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/schools-reopen-in-odisha/article35536368.ece

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