Tirupati: Lingering Covid fears keep students away from schools

Students wearing masks and maintaining physical distance attend classes at  SV High school in Tirupati on Tuesday
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Students wearing masks and maintaining physical distance attend classes at SV High school in Tirupati on Tuesday 

Highlights

  • In the first 2 days, the attendance of students is less than 10%
  • Parents are reluctant to send their wards as the virus spread is still rampant
  • They are of the view that the revision of previous lessons is not so important when the risk of disease is high

Tirupati: Fears of Covid still haunt the parents and students resulting in poor attendance even on the second day of opening of schools for Class IX and X. The schools in the state were opened on September 21, Monday, after a gap of six months, following the unlock 4.0 guidelines. However, the students of Classes I to VIII need to stay back at homes for some more time.

During the first two days, the attendance of the students was almost negligible with less than 10 per cent. In Chittoor district, about 80,000 students are there under 6,256 schools. Of them, out of 15,520 students of Classes 9-10 in 346 government schools in Tirupati division, only 2,750 students attended on the first day. The private schools are also experiencing very poor attendance.

The officials were of the view that there was not much variation in the percentages even on the second day. All the teachers have attended the schools on the first day and if any absentees are there they need to apply for leave, clarified the authorities. From Tuesday, 50 per cent of the teachers are attending the school on alternate days as per the guidelines.

"We are ensuring written consent from all the parents that they are willing to send their wards to schools. It's true that only a few students have attended schools in the first two days," said deputy educational officer C Vijayendra Rao.

A parent said that he could not dare to send his daughter to the school when the spread of the coronavirus was so rampant across the district. The government should have waited some more time before opening the schools. He expressed fears that schools may become Covid hotspots and children may fall victims. Apart from this, the transport problem also causes concerns both for parents and their children.

They feel that it is not at all safe to travel by autorickshaws sharing it with others. "Only revision of previous class lessons will be made by teachers now. This may not be that important under the present scenario. If necessary, students can also attend those classes online. So there is no point in sending them to schools at this stage," observed another parent.

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