COVID-Free Sikkim To Reopen Schools, Colleges From June 15

Sikkim has decided to reopen educational institutions in the state from 15th June. (Representational)

New Delhi:

The Sikkim government has decided to reopen educational institutions in the state from 15th June, state Education Minister KN Lepcha said on Friday.

Sikkim, the only coronavirus-free state in the country, has become the first state to reopen schools and colleges.

According to government sources, classes from 9th standard to the university level would resume in a staggered manner, while online classes would continue for the primary and elementary levels.

“Schools and educational institutions in the State have been closed since mid-March in the wake of coronavirus pandemic. The loss incurred by the students during this closure is irreparable but we used all available platforms like online teaching, local cable TV and All India Radio to conduct classes,” Sikkim Education minister KN Lepcha said.

“We have now decided to resume classes for students of class IX and above, college and universities in the State from June 15. We are waiting for the SOPs from the Union HRD ministry and NCERT which would be followed accordingly. Morning assemblies will not be held, all Saturdays will be working days, social distancing will be maintained strictly and hand washing facility will be installed in all institutions,” the minister added.

Also, to cover up the “academic days” lost due to the lockdown, Sikkim has decided that classes would also be conducted on Saturdays, the number of holidays in the academic calendar will be “drastically” reduced and if required, the winter breaks will be truncated, government sources told NDTV.

The minister also said that the annual exam in school will be held in February 2021.

The minister, however, added that this decision will be reviewed in the light of the COVID-19 situation.