The Maharashtra School Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad said that schools will not reopen in the state before Diwali. She said that the challenge is to find a way to end the academic year and assess students. “While we are exploring various options, it is clear that schools will not open before Diwali,” Gaikwad said.
According to senior officials in the state education department, reopening schools under the current circumstances is out of question, as there is no sign of the pandemic abating.
Earlier, Maharashtra Higher and Technical Education Minister Uday Samant said that due to the coronavirus pandemic, the situation in the state is not appropriate to allow physical classes in schools and colleges. While talking to reporters, he said that the Covid-19 situation in Maharashtra is not normal. “Therefore, it is not appropriate to conduct physical classes. We have also directed educational institutions to avoid the collection of development fees from students as there have been no physical classes,” he added.
Meanwhile, education expert Kishore Darak suggested that the state government can club two or three educational years so that concerns of parents about academic loss can be addressed. While the safety of students is imperative, it is high time that the state comes up with a bipartisan approach towards education, he said.
“The government must come up with a solution where local officials are authorised to take context-specific decisions like full or partial reopening of schools or alternate day scheduling of classes, among others,” he added.
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