The Ministry of Health has permitted schools, colleges, and higher education institutes to reopen from September 21. Moreover, the new session at educational institutes is going to be a tad different. The changes are wide-ranging than sporting masks or maintaining social distancing.
Who all will be allowed:
Not everyone will be at the campus right away. For schools, it is the students of classes 9 to 12 who have been provided options to attend classes offline. Schools will reopen to provide support to students who are deprived of access to online education or are facing issues. For colleges too, students enrolled in skill institutes, PhD scholars, postgraduate students, will be attending campus first as the institutes reopen in phases.
Mode of education:
Neither schools nor colleges are allowed to move to physical teaching now. Both will have to continue the online mode of education and a hybrid model will be in place. Officially, the Ministry of Health has asked both schools and colleges to rework their academic calendars to avoid overcrowding of the campuses. “Academic scheduling should have intermix of regular classroom teaching and online teaching/assessments,” as per the standard operating procedures (SOPs).
What will be open access:
Shared access areas will remain unavailable at this time. While the laboratories will be open, the apprentice or the equipment will be placed at a six feet distance. Gymanisums will be remain operational with limited capacities and swimming pools in colleges and schools will remain closed. For schools, congregations including the morning prayer assemblies will stand prohibited. Sharing of objects between the students or between students and teachers is also restricted.
Which colleges and schools will open:
Only those schools and colleges not within containment zones will be allowed to operate, as per the government rules. Students, teachers, and employees within containment zones will not be allowed inside the campuses. Employees who are at high risk including elderly people, pregnant mothers, people having diseases are not to be called to the campus.
Ways to reopen:
Before reopening all the campuses will be sanitized and fumigated, especially those campuses which were converted in COVID centres. The institutes reopening have been asked to stock personal protection including face covers, masks, visors, hand sanitisers etc. Campuses are also asked to avoid cash transactions and e-wallets etc may be promoted.