Delhi: EDMC schools to start in-person classes today with 50% strength
Civic schools falling under the jurisdiction of East Delhi Municipal Corporation will start in-person classes for students in the junior classes with 50% capacity from Monday.
Mayor of the east corporation Shyam Sunder Aggarwal said the strength for physical classes will be increased in a phased manner. “The online classes will continue simultaneously so that the education of children, who cannot make it to the schools for some reason, is not affected. We have completed disinfecting and cleaning the school premises; consent is being taken from parents to let their children attend physical classes. No one will be forced to attend the classes in school,” said the mayor. The civic body has around 2.14 lakh students in its 364 primary schools.
Aggarwal said only 50% children will be called at a time to ensure Covid appropriate behaviour is observed in the school premises. “Parents are advised to not send their wards to school and inform the teacher if their child is unwell or suffering from cold, cough or fever,” he said.
Rajiv Kumar, chairman of the education committee, said teachers who were deployed Covid-19 duties have been relieved . “Vaccination centres operating out of EDMC schools have been allotted limited space in the school premises to run their operations. Since the schools are opening after a gap of about one and a half years, special attention is being paid towards the cleanliness in all schools. Hand sanitizers will be kept outside classrooms; there should be adequate soaps in the toilets. School inspectors have been given the responsibility to visit the schools allotted to them and ensure that these guidelines are being strictly followed,” said Kumar.
A senior education department official said school principals have been asked to prepare a schedule of classes in staggered manner.
“Students in nursery classes, classes 2 and 4 and those in classes 1, 3 and 5 can attend schools alternatively. The schools which have double shifts can call one batch of students from 9am to 12 noon and the second batch from 2pm to 5pm in view of Covid safety norms. There should be at least a gap of one hour between various shifts,” the official said.
Each school has been asked to form a monitoring committee that will headed by the principal to ensure compliance to a 15-point checklist that has been framed to ensure Covid appropriate behaviour. “It includes steps like thermal screening, staggering lunch timings among other measures,” said the official.
However, some teachers alleged that while preparations are going on in full swing to start physical classes for students of all classes, little is being done to provide additional resources to the schools for ensuring Covid appropriate behaviour.
Vibha Singh, vice president of Nagar Nigam Shikshak Sangh, said while schools are gearing up to reopen, no additional resources have been provided to the school administration. “We need thermal scanners, sensor-based hand sanitizers, sanitizing machines and additional manpower for effective compliance of the Covid norms. The education department should allocate adequate resources to the schools for ensuring Covid appropriate behaviour,” said Singh adding that teachers have not been paid their dues for providing worksheets to the students taking lessons online.
The South Delhi Municipal Corporation reopened its door for students of the primary schools last week. A senior education department official said the schools are recording 30% attendance for physical classes.