State keen on reopening schools for all classes gradually: Min
kolkata: State Education minister Bratya Basu said on Sunday the state government was keen to reopen schools for all classes phase-by-phase. Schools (classes IX to XII), colleges and universities are reopening for students from Tuesday, November 16 and all possible measures have been taken by the state government to ensure that COVID-19 health protocols are followed by all concerned.
"It was necessary to make the students return to the mainstream of education and considering this Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has announced opening up of educational institutions from November 16. We are beginning with classes for students from class IX to XII and also for college and university students. We will review the COVID-19 situation after some days and gradually all classes right from the junior level will be reopened," Basu said on the sidelines of a programme at College Square.
He reiterated that all precautions in connection with COVID-19 have been taken for reopening of schools, colleges and universities. Basu made it clear that it is the discretion of the respective guardians whether they will be sending their wards to school for physical classes and there is no compulsion that everybody has to attend school.
Educational institutions across the state have been closed since March 2020 to curb the spread of COVID-19. As per guidelines of the West Bengal Board of Secondary Education, students of classes IX and XI will report at 9.30 am and classes of IX and XI will be held from 10 am to 3.30 am while that of classes X and XII will be held from 11 am to 4.30 pm. In both the scheduled timings, students have to report to school half an hour in advance.
The schools are dividing the classes in two or more separate rooms depending upon available resources so that Covid protocols can be maintained. No guardians or other visitors will be allowed on the campus and sharing of tiffin and drinking water is strictly disallowed.
Wearing masks is compulsory for all students, teachers, and non-teaching staff. The private schools in the city have also made separate plans of resuming educational activities from Tuesday.
DPS Ruby Park will start on campus classes for IX and XI from Tuesday. Classes will be held in hybrid mode (half of the students strength in school and rest from home online) in one shift for maintaining COVID-19 protocols.
There will be practical classes and examination related practice for students of class X and XII.
South Point High School is starting from Tuesday with only class XII. Classes IX and XI will attend physical classes in the gaps of first semester examinations by Board (CBSE).
Calcutta Girls' School is beginning with classes for IX and XI while La Martiniere for Boys and La Martiniere for Girls are beginning with all classes from IX to XII.