Published: 29th January 2021
Bengaluru schools to resume classes in full swing for 9 to 12 from February 1
Meanwhile, Vidyagama for Classes for 6-8 will continue, and the TAC will meet again in the second week of February to decide on the reopening of the other classes
The State Government has decided to reopen Classes 9 and 11 (PUC-I) in the offline mode along with Classes 10 and 12 from February 1. Teaching hours for Classes 9 to 12 will extend for the full day to complete the syllabus. So far, teaching hours for Classes 10 and 12 were restricted to three to four hours a day after they were reopened in the offline mode on January 1
Primary and Secondary Education Minister S Suresh Kumar made this announcement on Thursday after a meeting with Health Minister Dr K Sudhakar and the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC). However, students will continue to have the option of continuing with online classes or physically attending classes (offline mode), and attendance will not be compulsory. The Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) will be sent to the schools ahead of the reopening of Classes 9 and 11.
Meanwhile, Vidyagama for Classes for 6-8 will continue, and the TAC will meet again in the second week of February to decide on the reopening of the other classes.
Minister Suresh Kumar said that while he was planning to suggest reopening of schools from Class 1 onwards, it was decided to first assess the physical attendance of students in the reopened classes and only then take a decision on throwing open all the classes in the offline mode.
Till now, about 75 per cent of the students are attending PUC II (Class 12) physical classes, while 70 per cent are attending the SSLC grade. The Vidyagama scheme for Classes 6 to 8 has seen attendance of 45 per cent.
Suresh Kumar said there has been a positive response for reopening of classes from all quarters, and the students' enthusiasm for learning is reignited as they better understand their lessons in a physical setup where they can clarify their doubts more easily than in the online mode.
He also pointed out that the SOPs by the TAC had been followed and the teachers and students appropriately tested beforehand, and sanitisers regularly used, besides practising physical distancing. The coronavirus has not spread in a big way among students or teachers, he stressed.
At a recent meeting with members of the teachers’ associations, Suresh Kumar had said there was a demand that all classes be reopened for regular offline classes, and that the government employees' associations, primary and secondary teachers' associations, undergraduate lecturers and principals' associations have been repeatedly demanding that all classes be started for the benefit of children. "In the backdrop of increasing social ills like child labour and child marriage, the public too has all along demanded that all classes be restarted," he added.
A group of experts from different spheres too had written an open letter on Wednesday seeking the reopening of schools to prevent students from being completely cut off from the learning process.