However, the schools and students who prefer continuing the online mode would be permitted to do so, sources added.
Though parents were unwilling to send their children back to schools during an earlier feedback session held in November, most of them reportedly wanted to begin physical classes for the students this time, said a senior official from the School Education Department.
Only a few parents, particularly those from the cities, were not happy to send their wards due to concerns over virus spread, claimed the official, indicating that the government might reopen schools especially for Classes 10 and 12 board exam students after the Pongal holidays. The government would ask schools to split those classes with more than 25 students into batches, the official said, adding that other proposals include conducting classes on rotation basis. According to him, the schools that prefer conducting online classes and students who would rather attend online classes than be physically present in classrooms may be permitted to do so. The premises of all schools, including government and aided institutions, have been sanitised, he said. “All the institutions are also equipped with thermal scanners and other safety measures,” he said.
“Fresh draft standard operating procedure (SOP) on health, hygiene and safety protocols for reopening schools has already been released a few days ago,” he said. The official added that all schools were instructed to send parents’ feedback by Thursday evening so that the government would decide whether or not to reopen the institutions soon.