CHANDIGARH: More than 60% parents of most of the government schools, and less than 25% parents of private schools have given consent for reopening of schools for classes XI to XII, the schools have shared. The government school heads are, however, worried about the authenticity of the consent forms as they believe that consent forms could have been filled by the students instead of parents, as most of the government school parents are not tech savvy. On the other hand, the students of private schools, who have given consent, when asked why they wanted to come to school, said “to meet friends”.
A B S Sidhu, director principal Saupin’s School said, “Just about 10-12% parents and students from classes IX-XII have expressed a desire to come to school. We called a few to know which subjects they wanted help in and reply from some was, “We just want to meet our friends!”
At AKSIPS in Sector 41, out of 500 parents, 112 gave the consent, principal Ritu Bali said, HS Mamik, director of Vivek High School said only 11% parents gave consent.
Atul Khanna, director of Strawberry Fields School said 25% parents were fine with sending their children to school for guidance. Gurpreet Bakshi, administrator St Kabir School said 90% parents have declined. Pooja Parkash, principal of KBDAV School in Sector 41said, “Less than one fourth in most classes have given the consent to reopening the schools.”
On the other hand, principals of dozens of government schools, on the basis of anonymity said more than 60-70% parents in their schools have given consent for sending children to school. “We were surprised to receive so many consents, as parents have always rejected the idea of reopening. Our parents are from poor backgrounds and we strongly believe that the consent has been given by the students instead. When we talk to our students they always show interest in coming to school so that they can meet their teachers, friends and have a change in the life they are leading at the moment.”
To reaffirm, some schools are personally calling parents to check if the consent was given by them.
According to the authorities, the education department is still compiling the details sent by private and government schools.
Based on the data received, a final decision will be taken. Talking to TOI, director school education Rubinderjit Singh Brar said, “We will cross the bridge as it comes. If the government school children want to come to school, then we may have to cater to academic needs of few needy ones. But safety will be paramount.”
Sources said, decision is expected on September 18. If the education department decides to reopen schools for students of classes XI to XII for guidance, then guidelines will be issued, which will include number of students to be seated in a class, sanitisation and safety measures to be taken, to keep students and teachers safe from Covid-19.
On September 10, the education department had written to the principals of government, government aided and unaided private recognised schools to take consent of parents of students studying in classes IX to XII on whether they want to send their children to school for guidance by September 15.
But on Wednesday, education department again sought same details — asked schools to send details of total number of boys and girls in each class, and total number of parents of girl students and total number of parents of boy students who gave consent. Schools had a tough time sending details as a short deadline was given to them for this bifurcation and submission. The schools were given the format at 3.30pm while they had to revert with information by 5pm.
A principal of private school requesting anonymity said, “We went crazy because it was put in private schools group. One doesn’t check WhatsApp so frequently. We had the info in Google form so sorted it and then sent it. Earlier, they had asked for a report by September 15 which we had sent. There was no format as such. Anyway, we managed to send by 7pm.”
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