Gangtok 22nd May (IPR): Sikkim Government has decided to reopen the Schools and other educational institutes in the state from 15th of June after a gap of three months considering the importance of the higher classes and their board exams. This was announced in a press briefing held at the conference hall of Education Department, chaired by the Hon’ble Minister Shri Kunga Nima Lepcha today. The Minister informed that the State government has decided to reopen the schools, both government and private for classes IX to XII duly complying with the guidelines of the Government to combat the spread of COVID-19. However, the junior classes from nursery to class VIII will remain suspended until further order. Online education will continue, as usual, he added. He said that the daily assembly of schools will be suspended for this academic session in view of the outbreak of COVID 19. He mentioned that education of the students is of paramount importance and it should not be hampered at any cost and for that purpose, the Department is ensuring its best to reach out to students within and outside the State.
Speaking further on higher education, the Hon’ble Minister apprised that classes for all colleges and universities will be conducted in two shifts duly adhering to social distancing and other standard operating procedures. The Minister further explained that the annual examinations will be postponed to February next year so that the focus will be given more on studies. He further informed that schools will remain open on all Saturdays.
The Additional Chief Secretary Education Department Shri G. P. Upadhayaya informed that a request will be made to all district administrations to hand over the schools which are converted into quarantine centres in the state after duly disinfecting and sanitizing the institutes on or before 10th June to the Department. He mentioned that the Department is working relentlessly to strengthen online education in the state and special classes are being conducted online to facilitate the education process amongst the students.
Director Primary Education cum State Project Director (Samagra Shiksha) Shri Bhim Thatal highlighted that the students from border areas belonging to West Bengal and other parts of the country who are studying in Sikkim will be advised to make an arrangement to stay within the State after completing the quarantine period as prescribed by the health department.
He added that in view of a large number of colleges and universities students from outside the State, the decision for the resumption of classes has been announced by the State government early so that the students can take adequate measures to plan their return accordingly. He further highlighted that the State Government has been facilitating students with recorded audiovisuals, TVs, radio programs, online classes and other modes of education and reaching out to the students during the lockdown.