Published: 18th August 2021
Staggered entry and exit, handwashing: TN releases SOPs two weeks ahead of reopening schools for high school students
While only half the student population is allowed on any given day, schools are given the option of either maintaining an odd-even format or holding classes in two shifts
After a long closure, Tamil Nadu is set to reopen its schools for students from classes nine to 12 on September 1. Prior to this, it has now released a set of SOPs for the teachers and students to follow. It had already been said that only 50 per cent of the students will be allowed in the class on any given day and that the teachers will be vaccinated.
While soaps and sanitisers will be made available, a release by the Director of Public Health & Preventive Medicine says that symptomatic students and teachers will not be permitted inside the school premises. At the same time, the schools are to notify local PHCs about symptomatic people. The schools are also asked to clean, sanitise and disinfect before reopening.
While only half the student population is allowed on any given day, schools are given the option of either maintaining an odd-even format or holding classes in two shifts. Students are to sit six feet apart. One of the directions say, "If available, outdoor space or temporary space may be utilised for conducting classes keeping in view the safety and security of students and physical distancing protocols." This is only if the weather is pleasant, a condition that holds valid in a place like Chennai.
At the same time, schools are asked to maintain staggered entry and exit for students and to open all their gates to ensure that no crowding happens. "Ban of spitting shall be strictly enforced," says another direction.
Now, the schools will not be the same for any of these students. There will be no celebrations or events. In fact, the parent-teacher meetings will be conducted virtually.