Several private schools on Thursday decided to shift classes online or changed their plan to bring students back to campus following calls from government officials the previous day.
The principals of several private schools on Wednesday said government officials had called them up asking them whether they were continuing with in-person classes or had switched to online teaching. The officials also requested them to go for an early summer break.
The schools said the government officials requested them to follow the state government’s circular, which prescribed summer vacation from May 2 to June 15 this year because of the heatwave-like conditions last week.
A number of schools sent notices to parents on Thursday informing them of the change in the mode of teaching from in-person to online again.
Some schools will shift to online classes this week and some will do so next week, they said.
“It was clear from the phone call that we had to follow the government advisory. There was no place of conflict. As it is there has been enough conflict in the last two years over fees,” said the principal of a school in south Kolkata.
Schools had decided to continue with in-person classes despite the government circular because spells of rain since then had improved the weather.
At least one school in a notice sent to parents mentioned that following the notification and the advice from the state government, the school had decided to discontinue in-person classes and go online.
The school in the notice said they were seeking the cooperation and understanding of all parents.
Several school heads The Telegraph spoke to said the majority of parents had requested them to continue with in-person classes.
Many working parents have resumed going to offices and it is difficult for them to monitor the children’s online classes at home, teachers said. For some, it is difficult to spare a device.
When one school informed parents that they would be shifting classes online, many of them took to social media and expressed their disagreement with the decision.
“Unfortunate decision. Kindly reconsider your decision. Online classes disturb the mental and physical health of our child. Climate has already changed. There is no heat wave now so we are all requesting you to reopen the school,” wrote a parent in a social media post.
“...offline classes are better for kids. Everything was going fairly normal. The children were returning to their daily routine... but the online classes started again, very disappointing,” read another post.
The head of one school said: “The calls were made specifically so that we switch.”