– Reshma Ravishanker
Over the past week, private schools associations and managements have intensified their online campaigns and representations to the Central and state governments to allow hospitals to vaccinate teachers on a priority basis especially with the class and XII board exams scheduled to be held in May.
Even as several states have reported a massive surge in Covid-19 cases, the Central government has sanctioned only those above 45 years to be vaccinations in phase three of the national anti-Covid 19 vaccination drive.
In Delhi, some private schools have organized and paid for the vaccination of their teachers. Nita Arora, principal, Sri Venkateshwara International School, Delhi says all of the school’s teachers aged above 45 years have been vaccinated with the management bearing the expenses. “If the government permits, we are willing to get teachers below 45 years also vaccinated and are happy bear all the vaccination expenses,” she says.
Dr Vasudha Neel Mani, principal, Rockwoods International Schools, Udaipur, believes that the government must make its top priority to vaccinate all teachers before the commencement of CBSE class X and XII and ICSE and ISC board exams in May. “All teachers, regardless of which age group they are in, should get vaccinated. They are Indian education’s frontline warriors. Their vaccination should the government’s top priority. It will ensure safety of children as well as allow schools to reopen,” she says.
In Karnataka, the Associated Managements of Private Schools in Karnataka (KAMS), a representative organization of unaided private schools in the state, has given representations to the state government to vaccinate teachers on a priority basis, irrespective of their age. “We are asking them to consider teachers as frontline workers and provide them free vaccines. But the government is yet to make a decision on this important demand,” says D Shashi Kumar, general secretary, KAMS.
CBSE Schools have also been pushing the government to vaccinate all teachers before the board exams commence. “We have all signed an online petition asking for teachers to be vaccinated even if they are below 45 years of age. We are now contemplating writing to the state government,” says Dr Srinivasan M, founder and principal, Gear Innovative International School, Bengaluru.
Also read: Pune halts Covid-19 vaccination for teachersPosted in National, News