Schools in Ernakulam getting ready for partial reopening

Govt. to consult Health, Transport and Police depts before taking a final call on the matter

Schools in Ernakulam under the Education Department will be ready to complete preparations within a week following the government decision on their partial reopening in January, according to an initial assessment by the authorities.

A decision on resuming interactive sessions for students of classes 10 to 12 is likely to be taken at a meeting called by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on December 17. The government will consult Health, Transport and Police departments before taking a final call on whether to go for a partial reopening amid the pandemic.

Senior Education Department officials in Ernakulam said that they would wait for government directives on the standard operating procedures (SOPs) before the possible reopening of select classes. “The deployment of teachers can be done without much hiccups. We had already requested the Public Works Department, which is in charge of maintenance work, to ensure proper cleaning of schools,” they said.

On whether school buses will ply if schools reopen partially, the officials said that they would go by the common directive of the government. However, chances of operating buses for a few students will not be viable, they added.

The partial reopening of classes will be effected in accordance with the SOPs. The government has taken a cue on the matter from guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health in September. It had pointed out that all work areas intended for teaching and demonstration, including laboratories and common utility areas, shall be sanitised prior to resumption of activities with 1% sodium hypochlorite solution, with particular attention to frequently touched surfaces.

Visits by students to schools and teacher-student interaction must be organised in a staggered manner. Students, teachers, and employees living in containment zones will not be allowed to visit the school. They are advised not to attend the sessions if they have ailments like fever or cold.

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