The government announced the reopening of schools and colleges for students belonging to classes 9-12 with schools and colleges outside of containment zones allowed to operate. High-risk individuals including elderly people likely to be infected with COVID-19 will not be allowed in campuses which is one of the big steps as part of reopening schools and colleges under Unlock 4.0 news.
The health ministry said that students of class 9th to 12th shall be permitted to visit their school on “voluntary basis” for taking “guidance” from their teachers subject to written consent of their parents/guardians as part of standard operation procedures (SOPs).
The government directive also stated that schools used as quarantine centres earlier would have to be properly sanitized before it is allowed to reopen with only asymptomatic people allowed to enter the school premises.
“Cleaning and regular disinfection (using 1% sodium hypochlorite) of frequently touched surfaces (door knobs, elevator buttons, hand rails, chairs, benches, washroom fixtures, etc.) to be made Page 5 of 5 mandatory in all class rooms, laboratories, lockers, parking areas, other common areas etc. before beginning of classes and at the end of the day,” the government statement said.
Teachers and students have been asked to keep a physical distance of 6 feet with seating arrangement reflecting a similar change. The health ministry also said that outdoor spaces can be utilized if the weather permits while adhering to social distancing norms.
“Academic scheduling should have intermix of regular classroom teaching and online teaching/assessments,” it said while adding that schools and colleges should revamp their calenders to avoid overcrowding of campuses.
The government had earlier allowed Metro services to resume as part of Unlock 4.0 even as the number of coronavirus cases continues to rise in the country. On Wednesday, India recorded 89,706 new infections with the number of COVID-19 cases shooting up past 43 lakh.