School and Mass Education Secretary Satyabrata Sahu said the government had laid down a number of provisions to run the teaching and learning process for students during the epidemic. He agreed, however, that they could not reach all school students through online classes.
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“Keeping in mind the problem of mobile connectivity, the state government has decided to reopen schools for certain classes of students,” Sahu said, adding that they could reach 40 per cent students through online classes. The remaining 60 per cent students could not enter the class online due to mobile network, he said.
Sahu said online classes will continue as before. “It is not compulsory for students to go to school. It all depends on the decision of the Deputy Commissioner to reopen his / her district schools. Schools will open at 10 a.m. and close at 1:30 p.m. The academic year will start from July 2021 and will end in April 2022.
In Orissa, more than one million students in Class X and XII are preparing for the JE / NET / CLAT national level entrance exams and their annual board exams. Since the school closed, these students have lost about 150 days of regular classes. “Before sitting for the exam, they have to understand the link concept of the course. In view of this, we have decided to reopen the schools, ”said Sahu.
This order will be applicable to all public and private schools. The Department of Schools and Mass Education will issue a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for schools to conduct classes following all the guidelines of COVID-19. All teachers will be vaccinated against Kovid-19 on a priority basis. All District Education Officers have been instructed to keep the school premises clean and to follow the Covid-19 guidelines including heat scanning, masks and hand sanitation in schools. Schools conducting 10th class board exams will be reopened after the end of the exams, department sources said.
If schools are closed in the future due to cowardly restrictions or any other reason, the department has decided to conduct Continuous and Comprehensive Assessment (CCE) by the Board of Secondary Education (BSE) for ninth and tenth class students for the first time. Students and their parents should take this process seriously as these tests will help the board publish the results of the students.
The department plans to conduct four constructive assessments and two summary assessments. These tests will be conducted by class teachers or subject teachers in the second week of September, the first week of November, the second week of January and the second week of March. Official sources said detailed guidelines on the detailed assessment would be issued soon.
The Orissa Secondary School Teachers Association (OSSTA) has welcomed the government’s decision to open schools in the state. “Schools can follow the Kovid guidelines and hold classes smoothly. We also welcome the government’s decision to introduce CCE by BSE. Covid will assist the board in publishing the results of the students if the examinations are not allowed later. We have been demanding this before, ”said Prakash Chandra Mohanty, general secretary of the OSTA.
Rakesh Palai, a 10th class student in Ganjam district, said he could not attend many online classes due to lack of a smartphone. “After the school opens, I will clear my doubts about various things. I welcome this decision, ”he added.