The central government’s unlock 5.0 guidelines (September 30) had given states and union territories the flexibility to decide on reopening schools and colleges in a graded manner after October 15, based on the assessment of local COVID situation and strict compliance with SOPs. The guidelines mandated written consent of parents/guardians before resumption of in-person learning.
Since then, while some states in India decided to reopen schools for the senior classes, others are yet to follow suit in view of the prevailing pandemic situation in those states.
Here’s the latest status on school reopening across various states.
States where schools are yet to reopen
Delhi: Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia has announced that in view of the rising Covid-19 cases in the national capital, schools in Delhi will remain closed till the vaccine is available. “Until we get some vaccine, schools (in Delhi) are not likely to open,” said Sisodia, who is also the education minister of Delhi.
Karnataka: The state government has recently announced that class 10, second pre-university and Vidyagama programme for government school students from classes 6 to 9 will reopen from January 1.
Tamil Nadu: On November 12, the Tamil Nadu government announced its decision to put off reopening schools in the state for classes 9 to 12 due to rising coronavirus cases in the state.
In Puducherry, schools will be reopened from January 4 for half-day from class 1 onwards. Full-time classes will resume on January 18, 2021.
Gujarat: On November 19, the state government of Gujarat announced its decision not to reopen schools and colleges in the state from November 23 as decided earlier last month. Issuing an order, the state government said that the decision was taken in view of the rising cases of coronavirus in the state.
West Bengal: Earlier this month, West Bengal education minister Partha Chatterjee said that the government was not changing its stance on keeping schools shuttered till the pandemic situation improves in the state. The statement came a day after CISCE’s plea to the chief ministers of all the states and UTs to resume classes for class X and XII students from January 4.
Rajasthan: On November 30, the state government of Rajasthan announced that the schools and colleges in the state will remain closed till December 31 due to the surge in Covid-19 cases in the state.
Himachal Pradesh: The educational institutions in Himachal Pradesh were set to reopen after November 25. However, on November 24, the government announced its decision to keep all schools and colleges closed till December 31 due to the rise in the number of Covid-19 cases in the state.
Telangana: Schools for classes 9 and 10 along with the junior and degree colleges are likely to be opened after Sankranti (January 14). Meanwhile, the Telangana education department has decided not to reopen schools for classes 1 to 5 for the current academic year.
Bihar: Schools are slated to reopen in the state from January 1, 2021.
States where schools have opened partially
Punjab: Schools in the state reopened on October 19 for classes 9-12 in compliance with the COVID-19 norms.
Haryana: Physical classes have resumed for class 10 and 12 students on December 14 while for classes 9 and 11 students, schools reopened from December 21.
Andhra Pradesh: Schools in the state reopened in a phased manner. For students of classes 9 and 10, the schools reopened on November 2 and class 8 students have begun attending school from November 23. The classes are conducted on alternative days for classes 8 and 9.
Uttar Pradesh: The state government announced the reopening of schools in the state from December 7 in a phased manner.
Assam: Following the successful reopening of schools on November 2 for class 6 upwards, earlier this month, the Assam government announced its decision to reopen schools for nursery to class 6 as well from January 1, 2021.
Uttarakhand: Schools reopened in the state on November 17 for classes 10 and 12 students. A decision on resuming in-person classes for other classes is yet to be taken.
Madhya Pradesh: Schools have reopened for classes 10 and 12 from December 18.
Maharashtra: Following the state government’s orders, schools in 25 districts of Maharashtra reopened from November 23 for classes 9-12. Schools in urban and rural areas of Nashik city will reopen from January 4 for the students of classes 9 to 12. Pune schools are also scheduled to reopen from January 4 for classes 9 to 12.
Goa: Schools in the state reopened on November 21 for classes 10 and 12 after eight months. The state government has asked the schools to strictly observe the COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs) like thermal screening of students, hand sanitising, wearing of masks, social distancing in classrooms, etc. Decision on reopening school for other classes is still awaited.
Sikkim: Students of classes 11 and 12 started attending school on a voluntary basis with written permission from parents/guardian from October 19 while classes 6-8 resumed on November 2, and classes 3, 4 and 5 on November 23, all on a voluntary basis.
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