Union education minister Dharmendra Pradhan has reviewed the vaccination status of teachers as schools start to open up across the country. Rajkumar Ranjan Singh, minister of state for education, was also present at the meeting on November 2.
“Reviewed the vaccination progress of teaching and non-teaching personnel of schools, institutions and skill centres associated with the education and skilling ecosystem,” Pradhan tweeted. “With rapid vaccination happening in the country, we are looking at a future with restored normalcy and vibrancy in our schools and other educational and skilling institutions.”
Most states have already opened schools for all classes — a major step towards the new normal after COVID-19. As per the central government's record, over 92% of teaching staff have been vaccinated. In institutions under the central government, over 96% of teaching staff have been vaccinated.
From Rajasthan to Uttar Pradesh to Delhi to Madhya Pradesh – most schools across the country are reopening in a phased manner, with limited attendance, social distancing protocols and SOPs to be strictly followed for safety of students, teachers, staff, and parents.
States, including Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh,Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Telangana, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Chhattisgarh, Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Bihar, and Rajasthan have reopened schools for all classes.
Six States and UTs, including Jammu and Kashmir, Odisha, Arunachal, Goa, and Puducherry, have reopened schools for Classes IX to XII.
Six states and UTs, including Ladakh, Gujarat, Punjab, Nagaland and Jharkhand, have reopened schools for students enrolled in Classes VI to XII.
According to the report shared by the Union education ministry, only schools in West Bengal and Manipur are yet to reopen. West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee last week declared that schools in the state will reopen for Classes IX to XII from November 16. Manipur is yet to take any decision.
Schools reopened for all classes in Delhi on November 1, after 19 months of closure. Schools were asked to ensure no more than 50% attendance in a class at one point of time. Mandatory thermal screening, alternate seating arrangements, staggered lunch breaks and avoiding guest visits on the campus are among the guidelines set by the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) for the reopening of schools. However, the majority of private schools in the capital have postponed the resumption to post Diwali.
Schools in Odisha reopened for students of Classes X and XII on July 26 and for Class XI from October 21 with strict adherence to health safety guidelines. Physical classes had started for students of Class VIII from October 25. However, the online learning option is also being implemented and students can also remain at home and continue their online classes.
Bihar schools for Classes IX to XII reopened with 50% attendance from August 7, 2021. Schools for classes I to VII also reopened from August 16, 2021. Attendance has not been made compulsory yet. So, students can still continue with their classes as well. Schools were asked to follow strict COVID-19 protocol such as social distancing and wearing masks etc.
The Jharkhand government allowed schools to reopen for Classes IX to XII from August 2, with several COVID-19 safety guidelines in place. Students will have to submit their parents’ consent before attending physical classes. Schools were instructed to conduct classes till noon. The schools reopened for Classes VI to VII from September 20. A minimum one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine is mandatory for teachers. Mass cultural programmes will be banned at school level.
Maharashtra government also allowed schools to reopen for Classes V to XII in rural areas and in urban areas, students of Classes VIII to XII could be called for physical teaching-learning activities from October 4. However, it was left to the students and parents if they wanted to go in for physical classes as attendance is not compulsory. The State government is thinking of reopening offline classes for primary sections after Diwali.