Schools in Tamil Nadu reopened on Tuesday after a 10-month hiatus due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The schools which will reopen in a phased manner will follow the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) issued by the government.

A week ago, CM Edappadi Palaniswami issued a statement that said each class will have a maximum strength of only 25 students to maintain social distancing and the students will be provided with Zinc and Vitamin tablets by the health department to boost their immunity. The decision to reopen schools was taken by the government after holding a consultation with parents and teachers. The government said 95 per cent of the parents consented to reopen the schools.

A few months ago, Tamil Nadu School Education Minister KA Sengottaiyan said the state will reduce close to 40 per cent of the syllabus for the academic year 2020-2021 considering the pandemic situations. The exams will be held this academic year based on the prioritised content prepared by the State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT). According to reports, there is no deletion of chapters but certain topics in each unit on major subjects.

In a circular issued by the School Education Department, the officials have been asked to monitor the conduct of health camps in schools initially for health screening and regular check-ups. Sanitisers will be provided in each classroom. Health inspectors, non-medical supervisors will also be deployed in each block to ensure the safety of the wards and the staff.

The schools have been told to keep the local medical staff in PHCs and government hospitals to stay alert to attend to the school children/staff requiring medical help. All the schools including Corporation, Municipalities, Town Panchayats have been asked to ensure the cleaning of schools before reopening and disinfection activities daily. The noon meal scheme will commence in schools as usual following the SOPs.

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