Srinagar, Nov 5: Jammu and Kashmir Government is indecisive about whether to reopen the educational institutions or not as the winter has already set in.
According to the officials the schools may reopen after the winter ends but the colleges and universities will continue to function through the online mode even in the winter.
A teacher of a private college while talking to Precious Kashmir said, “Some students have been insisting to start offline classes but we have got strict instructions from University of Kashmir to deliver lectures through online mode.”
He said, “Even the college management doesn’t want to take any chances till the COVID subsides and the vaccine comes. Warnings sounded by the experts about virus may turn deadly during winters have sent the alarm bells ringing.”
An official said, “The government is aware of the fact that reopening of schools can lead to increase in COVID cases. Wherever the schools have reopened the COVID cases have increased in those countries. The Ministry of Home Affairs has authorized the local governments to take a call over the issue. The administration is weighing all the pros and cons. Winter has already set in so it looks difficult that schools will be reopened till March next year.”
It’s in place to mention here that the Jammu and Kashmir Board of School Education (JKBOSE) has already released the date sheet for examinations from class 8th to 10th.
“Right now our focus is on the exam. In winter schooling is impossible. We will have to wait for the next session to commence for students to go to schools again,” said an official of the Education Department.
A medico said, “We have to keenly watch COVID-19 in coming days as none of knows how the virus will behave after the temperature declines. Reopening of schools should not be priority at this point of time as the large gatherings can increase the COVID cases. At present also more than 500 people are testing positive for the COVID daily and the people are dying also in J&K. The COVID curve has to flatten before the educational institutions are thrown open.”
The schools, colleges and universities in Kashmir have remained closed for the past 15 months. First these institutions were closed on August 5, 2019 when the Centre announced its decision to abrogate Article 370 and divided the erstwhile J&K State into two union territories. These institutions had opened for few days in March this year but were closed down again after the outbreak of the pandemic. The education sector has suffered immensely in Kashmir since 2019 and students are waiting for their normal lives to resume.
“The COVID has to go for students to come together once again,” said a teacher.