Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh) [India], October 31 (ANI): Andhra Pradesh state government has taken all the precautions and strictly adhering to the safety measures as schools reopen from November 2 while the academic year 2020-21 has been extended up to April 30.
Since the schools will reopen in a phased manner, the officials have made changes right from day-to-day schedules to mid-day meals in order to adhere to safety protocols in wake of the COVID-19 situation.
Commissioner of School Education V Chinna Veerabhadrudu explained the steps being taken to ensure a safe environment in compliance with the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) of the central government.
Although the schools start functioning from November 2 for classes 9 and 10, the students will attend classes on alternate days till noon. The officials made it clear that each classroom is limited to only 16 students, following social distance protocols.
"Wearing masks, washing hands, and maintaining physical distance is mandatory which should be followed by every student as well as teachers. Every day the students will be undergoing orientation on COVID precautions and the classes start from 9:15 am and will go on up to 1:45 pm, followed by midday meals. In the afternoon hours, the students will be taking online classes for those students, who didn't turn up for schools. The academic year 2020-21 is extended up to April 30, totaling 180 working days," V Chinna Veerabhadrudu said.
The officials have also made alternate arrangements for the students who are opting to stay home and pursue online education, by bringing dedicated mobile apps like Abyasa and Diksa, along with Doordarshan classes and Youtube channels, based on the student's accessibility to the technology. As far as the residential schools are concerned, the hostel facilities will be made available anytime between November 2 -23, prioritizing the students who don't have any alternate option for accommodation.
"The schools were also provided with grants to acquire equipment like Thermo scans or sanitizers for maintaining a safe and clean environment. SOPs from the Medical and Health department and Transport department were also sought and the School SOP will be decided on November 1 after discussing with Parent Committees," according to an official statement.
There are about 60,000 schools including aided, unaided, and private institutions in the State. For students of 9-10, the schools will be reopened from November 2, for classes 6-8, it is from November 23, and for students of class 1-5, the school starts on December 14.
In regard to higher education, the State government has decided to open all institutes, including University Colleges and its Affiliated Colleges across the State from November 2 and classes will take place on all six days of a week.
"In this context, a new academic calendar for Non-Professional courses, Professional courses, and Post-Graduate programs was released. Classes for first-year professional and non-professional UG courses will commence from December 1," the official statement read. (ANI)