Updated: April 10, 2021 10:48:34 am
The Delhi government Friday ordered that schools in the city will remain shut till further notice in view of the rise in Covid cases. Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal made the announcement through a tweet: “Due to rise in Covid-19 cases, all schools in Delhi, government-run as well as private, will remain closed till further orders.”
The Directorate of Education (DoE) has also notified that all offline academic activities for students of classes IX to XII have been discontinued till further orders in Delhi.
“In view of the sudden surge in cases of Covid-19 in Delhi, all heads of government, government-aided and unaided recognised schools are hereby informed that conduct of all academic and examination activities through physical mode shall remain suspended with immediate effect till further orders,” read the order by the DoE.
City schools were permitted to re-open in January for class X and class XII students for their final leg of board examination preparation and for practical and project work. In February, class IX and XI students were also permitted to return to prepare for and write their final examinations.
Schools have now been instructed to not call any students of any grade for offline classes in the new academic year, meaning that even senior students who are beginning their new grades in the 2021-2022 academic year will do so online.
With most pre-board exams done, this means that the only children going to school were board-year students who wanted to consult their teachers and for their practical exams, and government school students who were writing their pre-board examinations.
Stating that teaching-learning may continue to be conducted online, the order further states, “They are further directed to ensure that no student of classes IX to XII is called in the school physically for any kind of academic or examination activity (like practice of practicals, mid-term & annual examination related work i.e., practical, project submission, assessments etc.) till further orders.”
While almost all private schools have concluded their pre-board exams and class IX and XI final exams, students in government schools are in the midst of the former and the latter is only scheduled to take place next month. Class X and XII students in all schools are in the midst of their CBSE practical exams.
In a recent circular, the CBSE stated that it has given till June 11 for the conduct of practicals for any student unable to appear.
“The circular gives us breathing time and an open window. Most private schools are done with half the practical exams and hopefully we will be able to get back to it soon. But in the current situation, it was simply not possible to ask students to come to school,” said Jyoti Arora, principal Mount Abu Public School, Rohini.
With regard to pending exams in government schools, an official in the education department said all such activities have been postponed till further notice. “It is too soon to say if we will have to conduct online exams. As of now, we are just waiting to see how the situation unfolds over the next few weeks. All activities that were to have been conducted offline are suspended,” the official said.
In the meantime, government school teachers said they are awaiting directives on whether they will have to report to schools. “The orders are only for school closure, nothing has been said about whether or not we will have to continue reporting to school. We are also in danger with the rising cases,” a teacher in a Northeast Delhi school said.
With cases surging in neighbouring Haryana as well, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar Friday said all primary and middle schools in the state will remain closed until April 30.
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