We have taken a little risk by reopening schools, Delhi Education Minister Manish Sisodia said today as students of classes 10 and 12 returned to their classrooms after 10 months when the coronavirus lockdown was enforced. Schools across Delhi have since remained shut in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The step had to be taken to prepare students for practical exams and pre-boards, he told NDTV after reviewing Covid-safety measures at various schools this morning.
“The CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education) board exams are due in a few months. We hope that this exercise pays off and students gain the confident needed,” Mr Sisodia, who is also the Delhi Deputy Chief Minister, said.
“We will not reopen schools for other classes till a significant section of the population gets the COVID-19 vaccine,” Mr Sisodia said admitting that though the admissions for nursery have been delayed they would be done for the next academic session.
The decision to reopen schools for class 10 and 12 was taken last week as the city’s positivity rate dropped to under 1 per cent and daily fresh infections remained below 500 after the recent third wave of COVID-19 infections.
Schools have been instructed to ensure students and teachers follow Covid-safe behaviour including mask wearing and distancing. They must also ensure sanitisation of classrooms, laboratories and other common areas and keep a stock of face masks and sanitisers for students.
The Delhi government has said no one will be forced to attend classes and parental approval would be compulsory.