Bengaluru: Schools reopened for students of classes 6 to 8 in Karnataka on Monday, by following strict COVID-19 protocols and standard operating procedures. As per government directions, schools have been reopened in taluks where COVID-19 positivity rate is below 2 per cent.
Primary and Secondary Education Minister B C Nagesh said that the government decided to reopen schools after approval from the state's technical advisory committee on COVID-19. "The department had an intention of reopening schools for some time now and teachers were also ready for it, but keeping in mind the health of the students along with education and concerns of the parents, we discussed with the technical advisory committee and after taking the opinion of expert paediatricians, we are reopening schools for classes 6,7 and 8," he told reporters.
The Minister said, many parents and students had urged him during his recent visits to several parts of the state to reopen schools. He said the entire government machinery and district administrations have been working together with the department for the safe conduct of classes. It is mandatory for students to submit a consent letter from their parents to attend offline classes and these classes are not compulsory, as there is a provision of online classes also.
The government has said that offline classes for students of class 6-8 will be held on alternate days, each with 50 per cent attendance, it will be five days a week, and the remaining two days (weekend) will be used for sanitizing and other COVID control measures.
In response to a question, the Minister said, looking at how offline classes will go on, the government after consulting the technical advisory committee will take a decision on reopening schools for class 1 to 5, but did not specify any timeline.
The government had already allowed the reopening of schools for students from classes 9 to 12 since August 23.