Delhi school shut for 1 week after student contracts Covid-19
A city school in north Delhi on Monday postponed exams for classes 9 and 11 and closed its campus for a week after a student allegedly tested positive for Covid-19, two days after attending the school.
Queen Mary’s School made the announcement after a group of parents protested outside its campus on Monday demanding that the exams -- which were supposed to begin from Tuesday -- be conducted online now.
In a message sent to all parents on Monday, the school said, “The school will remain closed for students of classes 9 to 12 from March 2 to March 6, 2021. The students will have to submit their Corona negative report to their class teachers on March 8.”
According to parents, a class 11 student, who had attended school on February 24, tested positive for Covid-19 two days later. They also shared a Covid-19 positive report, purportedly that of the student. In a video shared on social media by the parents, the mother of the student, who is believed to have the infection, could be heard saying, “My daughter came to school and there was no social distancing. She is now sick and she is at home….The school has put so many lives at stake. They made 300 children sit in an auditorium.”
School principal Ritu P Soloman denied the allegations. “The school is taking all Covid-19 related precautions.” A senior official at the school, who wished not to be named, said, “The school has decided to postpone the exams and close the campus for a week, acting on parents’ request. However, the parents of the student concerned have not officially informed the school about the condition of their child.”
“The school has asked students to submit their Covid-19 negative report because that’s the only way to verify their health status in the present scenario. We can’t again take the risk of allowing students to attend school with only an undertaking,” the official added.
Parents, however, are still apprehensive about the safety of their children. The mother of a class 9 student, who wished not to be named, said, “The school should either shift the exams to the online mode or postpone them till the situation becomes normal. What difference can they make by closing the campus just for a week?”
Aparajita Gautam, president of Delhi Parents Association, said, “We have been repeatedly writing to the Delhi government requesting it to direct private schools to give students the option of giving their exams either online or offline. The government should now take the case of this school into consideration and take a decision.”
A senior government official said, “We have not received any information about the Covid positive case at a private school. We will look into the matter. The directions for offline exams for classes 9 and 11 have been issued by the CBSE. Delhi government has no say in it. The Delhi government schools have already announced to conduct exams for these classes in offline mode only.”