Teachers handling Class X and Class XII (Plus Two) subjects in State schools will report for work from December 17.
A statement from the office of the Minister for General Education said 50% of the teachers on a day should attend school from December 17. This is to improve academic support being provided to students and gear up for revision classes for them.
The decision, taken after a meeting the Minister had with the General Education Secretary and the Director of General Education, comes close on the heels of Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s announcement on Tuesday that the government would consider if it was feasible to reopen educational institutions for higher classes if COVID-19 cases continued to dip steadily.
Arrangements would be made to finish digital classes for Class X by January 15 and that for Class XII by January 30, the statement said. Following this, whenever conditions were favourable to allow students to return to school, practical classes and revision based on the digital classes would be held.
General Education Secretary A. Shajahan said the government was targeting reopening in January subject to the situation then. There were a number of activities that were better undertaken by students in class 10 and 12 in schools such as practicals, question paper discussion, and revision. Depending on the school and classroom facilities and availability of teachers, the proportion of students to attend should be fixed in a school plan, and they should start gearing up for the examinations, be it in March or April.
Director of General Education Jeevan Babu K. told The Hindu that teachers were being required to attend school in December to start work for public examinations, including registrations, and ascertain how much knowledge the students had been able to imbibe till now and provide them necessary support.
Depending upon the improvement in COVID-19 situation, practical sessions for students as well as those for clearing doubts were being planned towards the fag end of the digital classes or when the classes finished. If conditions were really conducive, the government might not even wait for digital classes to end to get students back to school. It could look at options such as school during the day and digital classes in the morning or evening.
However, bringing Class X and XII students together in school may not be practical because of their sheer number – they total nearly 8.5 lakh. For this reason, instead of regular classes the government was considering sessions for doubt-clearing, especially for students in need of extra support, or issuing notes, Mr. Jeevan Babu said, pointing out that many States that had opened schools recently had to close them owing to the COVID-19 caseload going up. Plans were in place for schools to reopen, be it in January or later, he said.
The statement from the Minister’s office also said that digital classes for 1 to 12 grades would be scheduled as per reports from KITE and the SCERT. Steps would be taken to complete the digital classes in a time-bound manner and prepare for the annual examinations.
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