Back to school

Schools reopen amid thin attendance

Only 5-10% students of Classes IX to XII go for regular teaching on Day 1

Schools reopen amid thin attendance

POOR SHOW: Just two students attend the class at Dayanand Model School in Jalandhar on Monday. Tribune Photo: Sarabjit Singh

Ajay Joshi

Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, October 19

After a six-month hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic, schools from Classes IX to XII reopened in the district on Monday in compliance with strict measures and protocols.

Although special teams duly inspected the schools premises and reviewed the arrangements of sanitisation and social distancing norms inside the classrooms, there was a poor student turnout in most of the schools.

 A student undergoes thermal screening before entering Government Girls Senior Secondary School, Nehru Garden. photo: Sarabjit Singh

With students and teachers getting used to remote teaching, which has been the norm for much of this year, getting back to the traditional classroom environment seems to be challenging.

District Education Officer (DEO) Harinder Pal Singh said only 5-10 per cent students attended classes in government schools. The situation was similar in private ones.

As the school timing has been kept for three hours a day from 9 am till 12 noon, some students with jubilant faces started entering their schools even before the scheduled time. In most of the schools, normal classes were resumed in a graded manner. Schools having high strength have allotted time slots to their pupils and asked them to attend classes in a phased manner.

Gurinderjit Kaur, Principal of Nehru Garden School, said, “On the first day of the resumption of classes, the attendance remained minimal. Only 30 out of a total of 1,200 students came to the school. They were screened and given sanitisers at the entrance. Students were allowed to attend classes only after furnishing a written permission from their parents or guardians. We are expecting more students to attend classes in the coming days. Those who came today were delighted to meet their teachers and friends.” Apart from regular classes in schools, teachers continued to impart online teaching.

SK Gautam, Principal, Dayanand Model Senior Secondary School, Dayanand Nagar, said, “Teachers have been told to conduct online classes for those who could not come. Only three students attended the school today. We also received a number of calls from students and parents regarding safety measures. We are hopeful of an increase in students’ strength in the coming days.”


Education Secretary takes feedback

Education Secretary Krishan Kumar on Monday held a webinar with the district education officers and school heads to take feedback in view of the reopening of schools. The Education Secretary was told that there was a lot of enthusiasm among teachers and students on Day 1. Principals told the official that parents, especially those who have shifted their wards from private schools to government ones, were apprehensive about safety arrangements in the schools. However, they were impressed when they witnessed all Covid guidelines, including sanitisation, thermal screening, and wearing of mask, being followed strictly. The school heads said Class IV staff worked with dedication and zest to ensure proper cleanliness on the school premises. The Education Secretary asked the DEOs and principals to honour such employees.


This new is not normal for students

Even as students were happy to attend live classes after such a long gap, they did face psychological stress due to social distancing and masks. Lakshay Verma, a Class IX student, said, “It feels sad that they cannot shake hands with their friends. They have been seated separately at a distance of five metre. “Wearing masks all the time is tiring and without the entire classroom strength, the lectures won’t be interesting said Satnam, another student.

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