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Sunday, December 05, 2021

Tamil Nadu: Schools reopen for classes 1-8 after nearly 20 months

As the students are returning after a long gap, school managements have been instructed not to take regular classes for at least two weeks, but engage them in creative activities instead

By: Express Web Desk | Chennai |
November 1, 2021 12:51:05 pm
Salem MP SR Parthiban welcoming the students of a government primary school at Alagapuram near Salem

Physical classes for students in grades 1-8 resumed in Tamil Nadu on Monday after a gap of more than one and a half years. The schools had remained shut since March 2020 when the Covid-19 pandemic broke out and classes were conducted online. Now, with the drop in Covid cases and the state taking steps to vaccinate 100 per cent of its population, regular sessions have commenced for students in primary and middle school.

As the students are returning after a long gap, the School Education Department has instructed school managements not to take regular classes for at least two weeks but, instead, engage them in creative activities like singing, dancing and painting to ensure that the children are welcomed back in a happy mindset.

Managements have been asked to divide the students into groups and conduct physical classes on alternate days. They have also been instructed not to be rigid about timings for primary students. For the rest of the students, schools will function regularly from morning to evening. Like in higher secondary classes, the government is planning to introduce bridge courses for students after the first two weeks.

School Education Minister Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi asked parents not to worry about safety precautions as the government has accorded topmost priority to it and guidelines issued by the health department are also being followed. He, however, added that physical attendance was not compulsory. “As per Chief Minister MK Stalin’s directive, MP, MLAs and representatives of local bodies have been asked to welcome students with sweets as they are returning after a long break,” he said.

Schools have been instructed to stock up on additional masks and keep sanitizers in every classroom while ensuring that social distancing is maintained between the students.

As per the directives of the state Education Department, teachers and other non-working staff have to be fully vaccinated. District administrations, meanwhile, inspected school vehicles intended for students’ commute.

Schools in some districts including Tiruvarur, Kallakurichi, Cuddalore and Vellore remained closed on Monday as a holiday was declared in these regions due to incessant rainfall.

The state had resumed physical classes for students in higher secondary schools, colleges and universities on September 1.

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