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The Assam government has issued comprehensive standard operating procedures (SOPs) for reopening lower primary (elementary) schools in the state from January 1, 2021, by adhering to the COVID-19 safety protocols.
“Considering the importance of continuous education, the government of Assam will reopen LP schools from January 1, 2021. However, online education will continue for students who prefer to attend online classes rather than physically attend school,” a notification issued by the state education department said.
According to the notification, classes will be held every alternative day for students of classes I to V (lower primary section).
“Regarding (students of) Class IV and V, formal classes will be conducted every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Regarding (students of) Class I, II, III, formal classes will be conducted every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday,” the notification said.
“Regarding classes for students of class I to V, classes will start from 9:00 am and end at 1:45 pm with the lunch break (mid-day meal) from 12:15 pm to 12:45 pm,” it said.
The notification said that headmasters and headmistresses of lower primary schools should supervise and ensure that class timings, serving of mid-day meals, maintenance of all safety protocols relating to COVID pandemic are strictly enforced.
“Residential hostels will not function until further orders in respect of lower primary (elementary) schools. Besides, formal classes, online classes will also continue if found necessary. Meetings in schools (formal and informal) will not be allowed in the educational institution premises,” the notification stated.
However, the attendance of students in LP schools is not compulsory and will be subject to the consent of parents.
“There will be no cultural functions, meetings, etc., until further orders,” it added.
It may be recalled that the state government had extended the academic year till March 31, 2021, and subsequently from April 1 to March 31 every year primarily to recover the loss in academic days and to bring the session on par with the all-India level.
“The SOP also applies for private educational institutions and coaching institutes,” the notification said.
Revised SOPs have also been notified for continuing classes for upper primary schools (classes VI to VIII), secondary schools (classes IX and X) and senior secondary schools (classes XI and XII).
This also includes degree colleges, engineering colleges, polytechnics, private educational institutions, government and private training and coaching institutes and state universities.
(Edited by Andre Kongri)