The central government had earlier announced Unlock 5.0 guidelines (September 30) that gave states and union territories the flexibility to decide on reopening schools and colleges in a graded manner after October 15, 2020.
They had to decide based on the assessment of local Covid-19 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 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.
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. A decision will be taken after suggestions are obtained from teachers, parents and students, according to Tamil Nadu School Education and Youth Welfare Minister K A Sengottaiyan.
Gujarat: On November 19, the state government of Gujarat announced its decision not to reopen schools and colleges in the state stating that the decision was taken in view of the rising cases of coronavirus in the state.
West Bengal: In December, the West Bengal education minister Partha Chatterjee has earlier said that schools will remain closed till the pandemic situation improves in the state.
Rajasthan: After holding a review meeting with officials on January 5 regarding the Covid-19 situation in the state with officials, Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot has decided to reopen classes 9 to 12 from January 18, 2021.
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.
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.
Bihar: All educational institutions in Bihar, including schools, colleges and coaching centres, reopened on Monday after a gap of over nine months. Physical classes were held for students of standards 9-12 in schools and final year students in colleges.
Karnataka: Schools have reopened in the state from January 1 for students of class 10, second pre-university and Vidyagama programme for government school students of classes 6 to 9.
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, 2020 for classes 10 and 12 students.
Madhya Pradesh: Schools have reopened for students of classes 10 and 12 from December 18, 2020.
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.
Meanwhile, the Mumbai civic body on December 29 announced that schools and colleges in the city will not reopen till January 15, 2021, citing fears of a second wave of coronavirus.
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 Covi-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.
Arunachal Pradesh: Schools reopened for students of Classes 8, 9 and 11 in Arunachal Pradesh on Monday after more than nine months. The school reopened adhering to standard operating procedures and Covid-19 protocols, officials said. Residential schools and hostels, however, will remain closed for now. Classes for students of classes 10 and 12 had already resumed from November 16.
Puducherry: Schools have reopened from January 4 for half-day from classes 1 to 12. Full-time classes will resume on January 18, 2021.
Tripura: Schools in Tripura reopened for the students of classes 10 and 12 on January 4, 2021. On the first day, around 50 per cent of the students turned up for classes.
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