Parliamentary panel – Times of India says risk of schools not reopening cannot be ignored

NEW DELHI: The dangers of schools not reopening after being closed for a long time due to the Kovid-1 pandemic epidemic are “too serious to ignore”, a parliamentary panel has said.

The committee noted that the closure of schools not only negatively affected the social structure of the family, it also increased the participation of children in household chores.

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“The closure of the school for more than a year has had a profound effect on the health of the students, especially their mental health. Ignoring the dangers of not opening the school is very serious. The closure of schools has negatively affected the social fabric of the family, increasing child participation in child marriage and household chores. The current situation has exacerbated the education crisis, which has adversely affected marginalized and vulnerable children even before the epidemic. With this situation in mind, the reopening of the school becomes even more urgent, ”the panel noted.

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This week, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Education, Women, Children, Youth and Sports presented its report to Parliament on “plans to bridge the education gap created by the school lockdown, as well as guidance and review and reopening of online and offline schools.”

The panel said the importance of the issue should not be overlooked and a balanced rational approach could be taken to open the school.

Strengthen the vaccination program for all students, teachers and support staff so that schools can start working normally as soon as possible; Maintaining physical distance and always wearing a face mask, frequent hand sanitization, etc., as well as weakening students in alternative days or two shifts; Regular thermal screening during attendance and random RT-PCR testing for immediate identification and isolation of any infected student, teacher or staff is one of the recommendations for reopening schools created by the panel.

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“Each school must have at least two oxygen concentrators so that trained staff can deal with any situation and provide first aid until outside medical assistance is provided. Covid protocol, the panel said.

“The best practices to follow in different countries for opening a school can be considered for decision making,” the statement said.

The panel further noted that the loss of education for more than a year due to prolonged school closures in the wake of the epidemic would weaken the basic knowledge of students, especially at the school level in mathematics, science and language.

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“The loss of this education is a big deficit and it can damage the cognitive ability of the students,” the panel said in a report presented in Parliament on Friday.

“It could have a detrimental effect on poor and rural students, marginalized sections of society and vulnerable segments of society such as young women who may be unable to connect to any form of digital education during an epidemic. This needs to be addressed and immediate remedial action taken.” “The report says.

Schools across the country were closed in March last year before a nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus. Although some states began partially reopening schools in October last year, they had to order school closures again in April-May in response to the second wave of Covid-1 of attacks.

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