Teachers, parents against shutting down of schools amid Covid surge in Delhi

Teachers, parents against shutting down of schools amid Covid surge in Delhi

Even though Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia has suggested closure of specific wings temporarily if any student or staff tests positive for Covid-19, school principals, teachers and parents are against the move and suggest strict measures to curb the spread of the infection. 

With the rise in cases among students and teachers, schools have already started planning to enforce new protocols and restrict gatherings within the premises. Some schools may cancel their sports period to avoid students playing together, some schools even shut down canteens to stop students from eating in a group, while some plan to hold their morning assemblies inside classrooms only.

Satvir Sharma, principal Vidya Bal Bhawan, Senior Secondary School, Mayur Vihar Phase 3 said, “We are taking utmost precautions in order to avoid Covid-19 spread. We will conduct a meeting with all the teachers tomorrow to discuss about what all measures need to be taken within the campus.”


“We have asked the teachers to monitor the health of the children and if a child has a mild cough, then he/she should be sent to the medical room.” Sisodia on Friday said that the government will review the Covid-19 situation in the Delhi Disaster Management Authority meeting scheduled for April 20.

“There are experts who are keeping an eye on new variants and they present their analysis, which helps the government to make informed decisions,” said Sisodia. Meanwhile, Ameeta Wattal, educationist and the chairperson of DLF Foundation schools and scholarships said, “We all know that Delhi was the first state to close the schools and the last one to re-open them. Students and their education had to bear the loss. Some important rules need to be taken as shutting schools is no longer a conclusion. Measures should be taken for students who fall sick during board exams.”

Bharat Arora, general secretary of the Action Committee of Unaided Private Schools said that the schools should strictly reinforce Covid-19 rules among students and teachers. He said that rather than shutting the entire school, only the particular class should be closed. “Following online mode of teaching for the suspended classes will help to continue with learning. The schools should be following the guidelines as issued by the director education,” Arora added.

Doctors closely analysing the situation in the city too said that closure of schools is not the way to go while “scientific evidences” must be considered before taking such steps. According to Dr Samiran Panda, Epidemiologist, chief scientist with the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said that any decision should be taken into consideration through evidence, which says that epidemiologically Covid-19 at the community level is not driven by schools.

He added that consistent use of masks and hand washing are the key pillars to avoid spread of the infection.  “Schools should ensure that indoor spaces are well ventilated. Exhaust fans should be installed in place of AC’s in classrooms to create negative pressure for curtailing the potential spread,” Dr Panda added.

Dr Jugal Kishore, Head of the Department, Community Medicine at Safdarjung Hospital said, “Such a spurt in test positivity will happen but this can be controlled by effective implementation of personal hygiene and respiratory etiquettes.”


Schools ramp up measures
Some schools may cancel their sports period to avoid students playing together, some schools even shut canteens to stop students from eating junk, while some plan to hold their morning assemblies in the respective classrooms only

DDMA’s meet to be held soon
Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said that the government will review the Covid-19 situation of the national capital in the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) meeting scheduled for April 20