Several city schools are reportedly planning to conduct their upcoming exams online, after a top Guwahati school was put under containment and another decided to put offline exams on hold due to Covid. In the first instance, a teacher was found to be Covid-positive a few days ago, while in the other case, a student’s parents got infected recently.
“The situation is under control in Guwahati. Guardians may get infected by the virus. But we cannot disrupt offline teaching again,” Kamrup (Metropolitan) deputy commissioner Biswajit Pegu told TOI.
He said the onus is on school authorities to bring suspected cases, and those with symptoms, for testing.
As annual exams have started in schools in Assam, Pegu said any such decision needs to be taken by the institutions in consultation with the students and guardians in case of any adversity.
Chorus is growing for online tests in the city, but the administration remains unmoved, citing a “safer” environment. “Except one teacher, no one has tested positive in any school in Guwahati of late,” said additional deputy commissioner Sharmistha Borah, who is also in charge of health.
Civil society group Guwahati Yuba Nagarik Samity, however, opposed offline classes and exams after a new strain of Covid was detected in the country. President of the organization Kailash Sarma and and general secretary Rajesh Sarma said, “It is high time to stop all ongoing offline classes and exams and shift to online mode, especially in Guwahati-based schools.”
“A child can get infected by the virus even at home because their other family members will step out for daily work. Paralyzing in-person classes, when society is functioning normally, and closing down only the schools does not make any sense,” All Assam Private Schools’ Association (AAPSA) president Pankaj Das said.
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