OPEN HOUSE

Let parents decide which option is best for their wards

As covid cases rise in Chandigarh, should schools hold examination offline?

Let parents decide which option is best for their wards

Students come out of their class at Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 46, in Chandigarh. File

For offline mode, schools must follow all SOPs, never let the guard down against virus & ensure everyone maintains social distance

Offline exam only for Classes X to XII

Keeping in view the rising number of Covid-19 cases in Chandigarh, schools must continue with online examination for all Classes except Standard X and XII. This would curb the spread of the virus. Wise decisions must be taken by the authorities concerned else the number of coronavirus cases in the City Beautiful might surpass those reported from other parts of the country.

Shobhna Kalra, Panchkula

A single student can spread virus

Many schools have resumed classes in the UT. This is risky as one student, who has contracted virus, can infect the entire school. To play safe, the examination must be conducted online. Even after getting children vaccinated it will be not wise to lower guard against the virus.

Capt Amar Jeet (retd), Mohali

QUESTION

  • Covid-19 cases have witnessed a sudden spurt at the onset of March. In just 13 days, the city has recorded 1,206 infections. Should the UT Administration impose more restrictions to control the rising virus infection among residents?

  • Suggestions in not more than 70 words can be sent to openhouse@tribunemail.com

No appropriate safety measures are taken

Schools should continue with online education as cases are rising with each passing day in Chandigarh. What is the purpose of sending children to school if they are not safe? Many schools have opened and follow SOPs, but still no appropriate safety measures are taken either by teachers or students. Wearing a face mask or carrying hand sanitiser would not make any difference until they follow safety norms. Schools should be closed again and continue with online classes.

Muskan Sharma, Chandigarh

All students don’t have internet access

Surge in Covid case in the UT is a cause of concern. But, schools should not continue with online exam because students cheat while attempting answers. Moreover, all students have no internet access. Offline exam should be conducted by schools. The authorities should make sure that students wear face masks, maintain social distance and sanitise hands regularly. The school staff should adhere to safety protocol. Somewhere, residents of Chandigarh are responsible for the rising Covid cases because of their own negligence. It's time to take care of ours and others health.

MR Bhateja, Nayagaon

Can’t stop kids from mingling

With the recent surge in coronavirus cases, it will be better to continue with online examinations. While adults might follow safety norms it is not possible to stop children from mingling with each other. Chances of infection spreading rapidly in schools cannot be ruled out.

SC Luthra, Chandigarh

Offline exam must not be mandatory

Covid-19 cases are again on the rise. Schools are adamant on conducting exam offline. This has created panic amongst parents, which needs to be addressed before schools become hotspots of virus. Offline exam must not be mandatory. All schools must give students the option of appearing for their exam online or offline with consent of their parents. Students must furnish a negative Covid test report before physically appearing for any examination. The school authorities must follow all Covid-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs) while conducting examination offline.

Simran Sidhu, Chandigarh

How long can we remain stuck at home?

No doubt that the number of Covid-19 cases are surging in the region, but for how long can we all remain stuck at our homes. Schools should go ahead with offline exam for Classes VI onwards whereas for below Standard VI online exam can be arranged in case parents are not ready to send their children to school. We cannot afford to waste time of senior students. Online exam for seniors are not recommended due to mass copying from the Internet. In such circumstances, the mere purpose of conducting exam gets defeated. Even parents should support offline exam for the betterment of their children. One thing must be ensured that proper Covid-19 guidelines are followed in letter and spirit during conduct of offline exam by schools.

Bir Devinder Singh Bedi

Follow ‘Health is wealth’ mantra

As we observe that many higher educational institutions are conducting online exam. If it is possible at such high level, then why can't schools conduct online exam? Moreover, coronavirus cases are increasing among school students and teachers. We must follow the mantra "Health is wealth". All school students except board classes must be given a chance to appear for online examinations.

Anju Behl, Chandigarh

Students’ movement must be restricted

Covid-19 cases are increasing in the tricity despite best efforts by the authorities concerned. It is pertinent to ensure minimum movement of schoolchildren, when online facilities are available. Offline exam should be avoided till Covid-19 is wiped out. It will reduce cases and save students from travelling to and from school during the pandemic.

Col TBS Bedi (retd), Mohali

No exam below eighth standard

It's time students appear for offline exam. Throughout the year exam have been conducted online. The CBSE should give choice of offline and online exam to Class IX-XII students because parents are not prepared to send their wards to schools in the ongoing pandemic. There should be no exam for students below eighth standard. They should be evaluated and promoted on the basis of projects and assignments.

Anita Tandon, Kharar

Schools adamant on offline exam

Sudden jump in Covid cases in the UT is worrisome and alarming. Parents are in panic as many city schools are adamant on conducting offline examination in the midst of the pandemic. They are afraid because this virus strain spreads faster than the previous one. The school authorities should not conduct offline examinations.

Vidya Sagar Garg, Panchkula

Offline exam for only three classes a day

For fair assessment, offline exam mode is necessary. Schools can conduct offline exam as parents are suspicious about parameters adopted for evaluating students in the online mode. Schools should conduct offline exam for two or maximum three classes on a day to avoid spread of the Covid. Checking of students at the school gate by medical staff wearing PPE kits should be mandatory. Parents should take responsibility of their children for any symptoms of the virus. Parents also need ensure that their children follow Covid protocols and take necessary precautions to stay safe and healthy. Schools should go ahead with offline exam while following SOPs and help students get promoted to next class on the basis of fair evaluation.

Abhilasha Gupta, Mohali

No substitute for school education

School education is meant to prepare future citizens, who can make the nation strong and progressive. In schools, students learn through books and practical. They also learn discipline, team spirit, appropriate social behaviour and other things when interacting with fellow students and teachers. Games ensure physical fitness, which is lost when students sit in front of computers at home for a long time. Therefore, schools must conduct offline exam while following Covid protocol strictly.

Bubby Soin, Chandigarh

Online examination creates digital divide

Covid cases are rising in the UT with each passing day. The longer this crisis continues, the worse will be its impact on the study of students. Online examination is a good solution in the short run, but it is also creates a digital divide. Offline exam mode is much better than online. During exam offline exam students are more punctual and attentive in their study. So, schools should proceed with offline exam.

Gurwinder Bhullar, Chandigarh

Be optimistic about offline exam

The pandemic is here to stay. We must learn to stay with it and prevent the virus from spreading further. Start normal activities, but don't lower guard against virus. Follow all standard operating procedures. Schools must ensure that students and teachers wear masks, maintain safe distance and sanitise hands regularly. The Administration should sanitise premises of all schools. There should be a policy of no relaxation. Parents, teachers and students must be optimistic and opt for offline exam.

Bharat Bhushan Sharma, Chandigarh

Kids don’t have strong immunity

Schools should continue with online exam. Parents are afraid to send their children to school. Children don't have strong immunity to ward of coronavirus. The proverb "Prevention is better than cure" should be followed by one and all. Virus is now mutating faster than before. Therefore, schools should conduct online exam till the virus subsides.

Adish Sood, Amloh

Health of Students & teachers important

Covid cases are increasing every day in Chandigarh due to negligence of residents, who don't take necessary precautions. Whatever the reason be, it is evident that increasing cases are open risk for students and teachers, which stop parents from sending their wards to schools. In the present situation, it would be better to conduct online examinations. Managements should ensure that all Covid-19 related precautions are taken for safety of teachers, who come to schools occasionally.

Balbir Singh Batra, Mohali

Don’t insist on offline exam

The Covid-19 scare is back with a bang. Many states across the country are once again thinking about lockdown to prevent the spread of the disease. Even in Chandigarh, we are seeing resurgence of the virus. The UT Administration has imposed restrictions on the assembly of people at indoor and outdoor events. As children are vulnerable, schools should conduct online examinations till the situation improves. Many children travel to school in buses, autos and taxis. So, their chances of getting infected are more. For the health of schoolchildren it would be sensible for the Administration and school authorities not to insist on offline examinations.

Dr Anil Kumar Yadav, Chandigarh

Students’ safety & health top priorities

In the last few months, schools have perfected and honed teaching, learning and assessment skills of teachers and students through digital platforms. Students must be given an option to appear in offline and online exam as the pandemic is yet to over. Transparent assessment is important to check the academic abilities of a student. The traditional method of assessment is better to test the subject knowledge of the student. Online platforms are yet to get fool proof to prevent cheating. The greatest challenge in education now is to conduct examination. It seems the negative side of online exam weighs more than the positive side. Conduct offline exam while following SOPs to prevent the spread of the virus and ensure students safety and well-being.

Sanjay Chopra, Mohali

Give both options to students, parents

The UT Administration should issue instructions to all schools to give both offline and online examination option to students. A student should be allowed to appear for the examination in any mode as per his/her choice. There should not be any restrictions on students and parents keeping in view the situation created by the pandemic. The Administration should allow schools to open any time in a day for conducting examinations.

Avinash Goyal, Chandigarh

Covid-19 has hit education hard

Coronavirus outbreak has changed the face of education. It has adversely affected every area of education. There are many advantages of online examinations like safety of students is not compromised and school managements can reduce overhead costs. In online examinations, the timer runs above or below screen. It reminds students to complete the exam within stipulated period. There is no harm in continuing online examinations.

Dr Manjinder Kaur, Manali

Close primary schools in Chandigarh

Covid cases are on the rise across the city. Under the present circumstances primary schools in the Union Territory need to be closed till the situation normalises. The CBSE has already decided to conduct Class X and XII examinations in May/June through offline mode. As career of students is involved, the Chandigarh Administration should give option to parents as well as schools concerned to decide for the online/offline mode of examinations for the remaining Classes VI to IX. Those, who appear for the offline exam, must observe all SOPs to prevent the spread of virus.

SK Khosla, Chandigarh

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