Officials and school managements said standard operating procedure (SOP) was followed, and counselling and motivational speeches were given to students before the classroom sessions commenced
Director of School Education S Kannapan said that vitamin and zinc tablets were distributed to the students, and added that the government ensured that all schools strictly adhered to the SOPs to ensure the safety of teachers and students.
Citing reports received from various parts of the State, a senior official said more than 80 per cent attendance was reported in most of the State-run schools. “Many schools in the southern districts reported more than 90 per cent attendance,” he said.
“Students’ presence brought life to the campus after 10 months of lockdown. Of the 63 students in Class 10, 60 were present today,” said S Sujatha, principal, Vaels International School in Chennai.
Vasanthi Viswanathan, principal, Vels Vidyashram, said the school organised orientation sessions for students, teachers and parents on reopening of schools after the lockdown. “Teachers were instructed to allow students one at a time to avoid crowding during entry and exit,” she added.
According to Kalaiselvi, a Class 12 student of a government school in Pallavaram, being back at school gave the students confidence to appear for board exams as most of them did not have online classes.
For Akriti Yadav, a Class 10 student of Vaels school, it was a welcome relief after being stuck at home for several months.
KR Nandhakumar, general secretary of Tamil Nadu Nursery, Primary, Matriculation, Higher Secondary, and CBSE Schools Association, claimed that more than 95 per cent attendance was reported in most of the private institutions. “The government should consider resuming other classes too,” he said.