Teachers, students not for closure of schools in Telangana

TRSMA claimed that scientific evidence showed that Covid-19 effect on children was very small

HYDERABAD: Teachers, students and members of the Telangana Recognised Schools Management Association (TRSMA) opposed the government’s decision to close educational institutions from January 8 to 16 citing Covid-19, and claimed that the spread of the disease does not decrease with the closure of schools.

Delhi, Maharashtra, Odisha, Punjab, West Bengal, Goa and Haryana, among others, have closed schools.

TRSMA members claimed that scientific evidence showed that the Covid-19 effect on children was very small. Prolonged closure of schools would affect studies. "The decision to close schools is meaningless," said the TRSMA.

Eighteen members from six states from the National Coalition for Education said that closing schools will harm the children. "Schools must be the last to close and the first to open," they said.

Students of most secondary, high school and degree institutions that Deccan Chronicle spoke to said they were worried as their semester examinations would begin in February.

Twinkle Mendawala, 16, said, “We have exams soon, and physical revision classes are a must. We are hardly able to focus on online classes. Students are not very happy with schools being shut again and again.”

Ujwal Agarwal, a government school student, said he would utilise this break to catch up with the syllabus which had been completed in a rush. “It is very difficult to cope and be back on track. Self-study is the only measure if holidays are extended but help is always needed which would be difficult to access,” said Ujwal.

Some government school teachers pointed out that only one additional holiday had been declared.

Manju Lata, headmaster of Raj Bhavan Government School, said the students had got January 10 as an extra holiday, as schools would be closed anyway on January 8 and 9, Second Saturday and Sunday. “January 11 to 16 are Sankranti holidays,” she said.

“We have given students minimal homework which is basic reading and writing,” she said. She agreed that learning would be hampered if the holidays were extended as students in lower classes had forgotten how to read and write.

“Their approach towards studies has become very casual. If the holidays are extended, students and teachers would be in trouble,” she added.

Venkat Ramulu, Principal of ZPHS Gandhinagar Government School, said the holidays would not affect students much as it was the festive season. However, as their academic performance was poor, they would have to write last term's question paper again to keep in touch.

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