After the stabilisation of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Chandigarh administration has decided to partially reopen schools and coaching institutions within the Union Territory. Schools shall reopen from July 19, 2021, only for students of classes 9 to 12. Students shall be allowed to attend schools only after prior consent and permission from parents or guardians. Along with this, online education shall continue in schools, as per the usual norms. However, schools for lower classes shall remain closed and online education shall be encouraged. This decision is part of the relaxation introduced by the UT administration.
While schools and coaching institutions shall partially open in the city, certain other relaxations will also come into place. The famous Rock garden and museums within the city shall also be permitted to function. However, these relaxations are subjected to certain guidelines and prerequisites prescribed by authorities.
For instance, schools shall be allowed to open only after authorisation and consent from the parents. At the same time, online teaching shall continue as per usual. Similarly, coaching institutions in Chandigarh will be permitted to open on one condition, i.e all staff members and students attending classes must have taken at least the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Moreover, appropriate protocols and guidelines must be followed at the respective institutes.
This decision of the UT government comes as a surprise as two days ago, the Chandigarh administration ruled out the possibility of opening schools until further orders. The decision has been reversed today but, with no clarity about the opening of the colleges in the UT. As per reports, the government is planning to open the colleges next month. The reason being that the ongoing semester exams shall end mostly by the first week of August 2021.
As per officials, the government is weighing the possibility and feasibility of opening colleges soon. However, before doing so, the vaccination status of students and teachers must be taken into consideration. Authorities are also keeping a close watch on the decisions taken by the neighbouring states.
Currently, according to the directives given by the Chandigarh administration, the health department is focusing on vaccinating as many students as possible. The students have also extended their willingness to take the COVID-19 vaccine before rejoining physically classes. Additionally, the government has also clarified that students who are not willing to take the vaccine, as of now, can attend college through online mode until they get the jab.