Onus on teachers, government as Delhi schools reopen for young, unvaccinated students

According to Aparajita Gautam, president of Delhi Parents Association, many parents are apprehensive about sending their junior class children to schools as they are not vaccinated yet.

Published: 14th February 2022 07:10 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th February 2022 07:10 AM   |  A+A-

schools reopening

Image used for representational purpose only. (File Photo)


NEW DELHI: Schools in the national capital are set to reopen for nursery classes to class 8 from Monday even as few parents continue to be concerned while few others scramble for logistics such as transportation.

Following a prolonged closure in view of COVID-19, schools reopened for classes 9 to 12 on February 7.

According to Aparajita Gautam, president of Delhi Parents Association, many parents are apprehensive about sending their junior class children to schools as they are not vaccinated yet.

"Hence, they will opt to wait and watch," she said.

Anil Bhati, parent of a 7-year-old said, "I would want to send my child but schools have not started transportation yet and I am scrambling to make other logistic arrangements. When schools reopen, the government should also order resumption of transportation services."

Schools in the city were briefly reopened before being closed again on December 28 last year in view of the third wave of the coronavirus driven by its Omicron variant.

While the Centre has dropped the clause that mandated parental consent for students to physically attend classes from its guidelines, the Delhi government has decided to continue with the clause.

The schools are, however, free to decide on the number of students they want to accommodate based on their infrastructure, keeping in mind Covid protocols.

"Parents, especially whose wards are in junior classes, are still apprehensive. We sent out consent forms, but the response is not very good. We are now planning to hold counselling sessions for parents," said the principal of a top private school.

Using all the entry and exit gates, staggered lunch breaks, adequate thermal scanning and sanitisation of the premises are some of the guidelines laid down by the Delhi Disaster Management Authority for the reopening of schools.

Also, teachers are required to counsel the students and prepare them for teaching and learning activities, besides providing emotional support, so that they adjust to the new normal.

"We are reopening in a phased manner. Communication through text messages and e-mails is disseminated to the parents. We are planning to take learning outside the classes in ventilated areas keeping the weather in mind, adapting instructions and curriculum using outdoor equipment and nature, enhancing experiences with physical activity outdoors -- gross motor, sports and outdoor games," said Shubhi Soni, head of Shri Ram Wonder Years School in Rohini.

"We will be resuming the physical classes for primary and secondary school students tomorrow. The classes will be held in hybrid mode. Parents and students are enthusiastic and excited about the reopening of the school. Most of the parents have given their consent to send their wards to school. The safety of our students has always been a top priority for us and we will adhere to Covid protocols," said Ritu Mehta, principal of Apeejay School, Panchsheel Park.


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