As UT gears up to begin regular classes for class 9 to 11, the District Education officer issued the guidelines in this regard to the government school principals and heads. It said that private schools may too adopt these instructions or amend them, except the points specified by the Centre, as per their requirement in consultation with their management for smooth functioning of the school.
The DEO said that written consent of parents will be taken only once for the children to attend the school. “Written consent of parents to send their wards to schools is to be taken only once by the schools that is before or on the day of reopening of schools and will be valid unless it is withdrawn by parents,” he said.
The directions stated that schools will have to follow staggered timings like for classes 10 to 12, according to which the first session would be held from 9 am to 11.30 am and for classes 9 to 11, session would be held from 12.00 pm to 2.30 pm.
The DEO specified in the order that teachers will continue with online classes . However, teachers will teach those students in school who prefer to attend the school following the SOPs .
The guidelines also specified particular protocols for the teaching staff. “As 100 per cent teaching and non-teaching staff will attend school daily from November 2 onward, the principal or head of the school will need to prepare the schedule and time table in a systematic manner so that all the teachers take their classes offline and online from the school premises. In the time available after online and offline classes, teachers may prepare supporting need-based worksheets or assignments to supplement their teaching,” a statement by the DEO said.
However, these directions have not gone down well with the UT Cadre Educational Employees Union. “In one of the schools in Punjab, a government school teacher tested positive and the school had to be sealed. Why cannot they understand that it is risky at this point of time to call the students,” said Swarn Singh Kamboj, president of the union. “Moreover, you see how difficult it will be for the teachers to take online and offline classes both. There has to be some proper mechanism for this.”
In the orders issued Wednesday, principal and heads of schools have been asked to ensure that different task teams are formed for smooth school functioning. It also stated that as per orders, these conditions as specified should be strictly followed. The online mode of teaching will however be encouraged among the students in view of the pandemic.
The orders by government have specified that attendance must not be enforced, and must depend entirely on parental consent.
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