Schools in Gautam Budh Nagar reopen for classes 9-12, low turnout on Day 1


Schools in Gautam Budh Nagar reopened for students in classes 9 to 12 on Monday after the Uttar Pradesh government gave the green signal on Saturday.

The government had issued a directive regarding the closure of all schools in Uttar Pradesh from January 16 to 23 this year due to the increase in the number of Covid-19 cases. Later, the closure was extended till February 6 and schools were asked to conduct online classes. On February 5, the government issued an order stating that schools will be allowed to reopen for classes 9-12 on February 7, and they would have to follow strict Covid protocols.

According to Dharmveer Singh, district inspector of schools, Gautam Budh Nagar, 20%-30% of the total number of students turned up to class across the district on the first day.

“Today (Monday) was the first day which is why there was less number of students, but the number is expected to increase during the week,” said Singh. He added that some schools could not be opened for in-person classes as they are designated polling booths.

“Twenty-eight private and government schools in the district remained closed as they are designated polling booths and some are being used as residences of paramilitary forces. Classes in these schools will start only after the first phase of elections are over on February 10,” said Singh.

Gautam Budh Nagar district’s three constituencies- Dadri, Jewar and Noida- go to polls on February 10.

SS Varun, principal of Government Inter College in Sector 12, said that only 30% of the students in classes 9 -12 attended the school on Monday.

“Out of around 1,100 students in classes 9 to 12 at our school, less than 400 attended the classes. The school followed all SOPs and was sanitised before the arrival of students. Neither the prayer meeting nor sports were held in the school,” he said.

With examinations for UP Board and CBSE due in March for classes 10 and 12, principals say resumption of in-person classes will help students prepare.

“Schools will now be able to prepare students for the exams by holding mock tests. Since the CBSE examination pattern is different this year, students require hands-on preparation which is only possible with physical classes,” said Renu Singh, principal of Amity International School, Noida.

Parents, who have been demanding the resumption of in-person classes, are happy with the government’s decision. “Since students in the age 15-18 group are getting vaccinated against Covid-19, parents are more comfortable in sending them to school now. Gradually the strength of students in schools is expected to increase as exams get closer,” said Manoj Kataria, founder of Gautam Budh Nagar Parents Welfare Society.

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