Delhi govt allows schools to reopen for classes 10, 12 from January 18

Jan 13, 2021 03:18 PM IST

According to the circular, only schools outside containment zones will be allowed to reopen, and students, teachers, and staff living in these zones will not be allowed to attend

The Delhi government on Wednesday allowed all schools in the national capital to call students of classes 10 and 12 back to the campus from January 18 for pre-board preparations and practical work. The schools have been asked only to call students with the consent of the parents and follow all the Covid-19 precautions.

Representational image. (HT Archive)
Representational image. (HT Archive)

All schools in the national Capital have been physically shut since March last year in order to avoid the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. This will be the first time after 10 months that students will return to their campuses.

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In a circular issued on Wednesday, the Directorate of Education (DoE) said, “In order to conduct the activities pertaining to pre-board preparations and practical work, the head of government, aided and unaided recognised schools may call the students of classes 10 and 12 only to school with effect from January 18, 2021. However, the child should be called to school only with the consent of parents, following the enclosed standard operating procedure. Further, while the records of children coming to school be maintained, the same should not be used for attendance purposes as sending the child to school is completely optional for parents.”

According to the circular, only schools outside containment zones will be allowed to reopen and students, teachers, and staff living in these zones will not be allowed to attend. The schools have been asked not to hold any assembly and physical outdoor activities . The principals have been asked to guide children not to share books, copies and stationary items.

While the pre-board exams of Class 12 will be conducted between March 3 and April 15, for Class 10 they will be held between April 1 and April 15, the circular started.The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has already announced the timeline of practical and written examinations. While practical exams will begin from March 1, written exams will be conducted between May 3 and June 10.

The DoE has asked schools to provide emotional and trauma support to students and teachers upon their return to the campus. The schools have to maintain social distance of six feet, have staggered timings and maintain hygiene, among other Covid-19-appropriate guidelines already issued by the government.

While a majority of the schools has welcomed the decision, several parents said they are still apprehensive about the safety of their children.

Jyoti Arora, the principal of Mount Abu Public School in Rohini, said, “It was much needed to prepare students for hands-on practice for the forthcoming CBSE practical exams. There are also students in a class who need extra help from teachers, so it’s going to be very helpful for them. Students will be able to get detailed guidelines and supervision from teachers for projects and practical files.”

Sumit Vohra, the father of a Class 10 student at DPS Vasant Kunj, said, “Whose responsibility would it be if my child is infected with the virus while attending school? I will not send my child to the school till the situation becomes totally normal. It’s good that the government has given an option.”

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    Fareeha Iftikhar is a Special Correspondent with the national political bureau of the Hindustan Times. She tracks the education ministry, and covers the beat at the national level for the newspaper. She also writes on issues related to gender, human rights and different policy matters.

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