Schools in Maharashtra may reopen in 
‘New normal’ from November 23
School/ Representational Image

In view of the coronavirus pandemic and closure of schools, the Maharashtra School Education Minister Varsha Gaikwad on Friday said the 10th and 12th standard examinations will not be possible before May next year. The state government is also planning to start classes IX to XII from November 23 and has prepared SOP for the same. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray’s approval for the same is pending.

Gaikwad said though the online classes have begun the government proposes to allow reopening of schools only for Std 9 to Std 12 classes and not others considering the presence of virus. ‘’ The students from these classes can observe public distancing, wear masks and use sanitizers. If the number of students in division is high, they can be called twice a day or an alternate day. There will be less pressure on these students as the already 25% curriculum has been reduced. It is true Std 10th and Std 12th are important milestones for students and therefore it is our sincere attempt to reduce pressure on students and also parents,’’ she viewed.

“As far as the examination of Std 10 and Std 12, they can be held in May as it won’t be possible in February or March and also in June, July, August and September being the rainy season. If these exams will be held after monsoon then the results will be delayed and students will be harmed,’’ she noted.

Gaikwad said these issues were discussed at the state cabinet meeting held on Thursday.

"Given the current situation, we are giving priority to the health of the children and we are trying to ensure that their education is not harmed. The 12th standard syllabus has been reduced by 25 per cent and the information is available on the SCERT website," said Gaikwad.

On the commencement of admission for 11th standard, Gaikwad said the department has moved filed for CM’s consent and decision is expected soon. Thereafter, the admission process is expected to begin in the next two to three days. ‘’ The Std 11th admission process has been suspended in the wake of interim stay granted by the Supreme Court on Maratha quota. However, it will start in the next two to three days after CM’s clearance. Online education for all the three branches of science, arts and commerce is underway," she said.

According to the compilation by the department, of the total intake capacity of 18, 51,990 in 9,523 junior colleges across the state so far 11, 51,985 have been admitted through online and offline processes. There are still 7, 00, 005 vacancies.

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