“We have not yet decided on opening of schools, but I will hold a meeting first with PTAs and headmasters’ association,” Sawant told TOI.
Last week Sawant had said that the government wants to partially re-open institutions for Classes IX, X, XI, XII as well as the final year graduation level institutes in consultation with PTAs and headmasters’ associations.
However, science and technology minister Michael Lobo was not in favour of the plans. “If children go to school then chances are that those with weak immunity may contract the virus. Going to higher secondary schools by buses is going to be the biggest risk. I have requested the chief minister to delay opening of schools and colleges,” Lobo had said.
The Central government had recently announced that educational institutions could re-open from September 21 for Classes IX-XII students and that attendance would be voluntary.
The ministry of health and family welfare (MHFW) in its guidelines said schools outside the containment zones only shall be allowed to open. MHFW said that prior to opening institutions, all work areas intended for teaching, demonstrations etc., including laboratories and other common utility areas have to be sanitised with attention to frequently touched surfaces.
“Schools that were used as quarantine centres will be properly sanitised and deep-cleaned before partial functioning is resumed,” the Union government stated. Similarly, teaching and non-teaching employees (up to 50% of work strength) may be called to schools for online teaching.