Minister for School Education K.A. Sengottaiyan said that the health and safety of the students were the government’s top priority in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, and no decision has been made yet on the reopening of schools.
“The safety of the students is what we are focussed on right now and the Chief Minister will decide when schools will reopen after discussions with the Education, Health and other departments,” he said.
This comes a day after the Union Education Ministry released standard operating procedures for the reopening of schools after October 15 in a phased manner.
Minister chaired a meeting at the Anna Centenary Library in Kotturpuram of Chief Educational Officials (CEOs) and other directors from the School Education Department. “Learning has been going on through online classes as well as televised lessons, and this meeting was convened to assess the current situation regarding the same,” Mr. Sengottaiyan said.
While the School Education Department in September had said that students of classes 10 to 12 could be called in to schools voluntarily to seek guidance in batches, the decision was soon put on hold.
The detailed guidelines released by the Education Ministry on Monday say that States should take the consent of parents or guardians before their child begins attending school and that students who are willing to study from home can continue to do so. Apart from cleaning and disinfecting the school campus thoroughly, strict physical distancing norms, staggered time-tables and regular health check-ups are among the guidelines to be followed.