GUWAHATI: All residential school hostels in Assam will fully reopen from November 1.
A latest order issued by the state education stated that for students of classes I to VIII, hostels will reopen from November 1 while classes IX and XI students have been allowed to enter hostels from October 19. Final-year students of undergraduate (UG) and postgraduate (PG) classes are already staying in hostels.
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Sources in the education department said before November 1, students from the rest of the UG and PG classes will also be able to join their hostels.
“Due to improved Covid-19 situation, the government of Assam, after due consideration of all parameters, is pleased to notify that the hostels in residential schools/day boarding schools are allowed to function for class IX and XI w.e.f 19/10/2021 and from class I to VIII w.e.f .1 st November, 2021,” read the order.
It further cautioned that all protocols of safety guidelines in view of Covid-19 must be strictly followed. Though physical classes for the elementary level (I to VIII) will resume on October 19, reopening of hostels has been slightly delayed to keep a watch on the situation. In the elementary classes, around 50 lakh students are enrolled across Assam. It is going to be a huge exercise to monitor safe movement of the kids who remain unvaccinated.
“It’s a wait-and-watch move. After reopening of the campuses we will slowly open the hostels. It’s going to be a swift transition,” principal secretary of state education department, B Kalyan Chakravarthy, told TOI on Sunday.
Even as only a few districts in Assam have a positivity rate above 1%, education department officials are hopeful that both hostels and offline classes will begin smoothly.
“We want special government observation in the hostels as the schoolchildren might not remember to maintain social distancing,” said Assam State Primary Teachers’ Association (ASPTA) general secretary, Ratul Chandra Goswami.
The education department, however, has clarified that in case in any district the positivity rate goes above 2% on a particular day, the DC of the district concerned, in consultation with the mission director, National Health Mission, Assam, will close down the educational institutions.