Mumbai: Schools may begin new academic year via online mode

With the start of the new academic year 2021-22 slated to begin from mid-June, schools have instructed teachers to start preparing for initial months of teaching-learning via online mode. Teachers of state-board schools said though the state school education department has not announced an official date to start the new academic session, they have been informed to begin regular lectures for Classes 1 to 10 from June 15 by respective school authorities.

Ayesha Malik, principal of an Andheri school said, "With lockdown restrictions in place for schools and colleges in Maharashtra, there are slim chances of regular classes starting via offline mode for the next few months. We have already instructed all our teachers to start regular classes from June 15 via virtual mode in order to avoid any delay for students."

Every year, the academic year generally begins from June 15 for Classes 1 to 10. Hitesh Malwankar, a senior teacher, said, "After a year of online education, students are now used to virtual classes. Even though some lockdown restrictions have been recently lifted in Maharashtra, it still seems like a long wait for schools to reopen offline. Till then, we will start daily classes via online mode."

Officials of state school education department said the date for the start of the new academic year 2021-22 has not been released yet. A senior official of the department said, "We have not yet decided the date for the start of the new academic session."

Vaccination for those below 18 has not been started yet, said Tushar Pandit, a Class 10 teacher. Pandit said, "It is not safe to reopen offline classes for students unless vaccination against Covid-19 is provided for all. This process will take time as there are large number of students. At present, online classes are the only way forward in order to prevent loss of academic learning."

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