September 26, 2023

Reopening Schools Guidelines – India’s tally crosses 66 lakh; 1 in 10 may have COVID


Reopening Schools Guidelines – India’s tally crosses 66 lakh; 1 in 10 may have COVID, says WHO.

Centre releases guidelines for reopening schools in a graded manner from October 15. Meanwhile, COVID-19 cases in India has crossed 66 lakh on Monday.

As per the guidelines, students may attend schools only after written consent from parents, the premises will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, attendance norms will be flexible and there will be no assessment for up to three weeks.

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Reopening Schools Guidelines – India’s tally crosses 66 lakh; 1 in 10 may have COVID

As per the latest update from the Union health ministry, the number of people who have recuperated from the disease surged to 55,86,703, pushing the recovery rate to 84.3 percent.

The total coronavirus cases mounted to 66,23,815 with 74,442 people testing positive for the infection in a day, while the toll climbed to 1,02,685 with the virus claiming 903 lives in a span of 24 hours.

There are 9,34,427 active cases of the coronavirus infection in the country which comprises 14.11 percent of the total caseload, as per the data. The COVID-19 case fatality was recorded at 1.55 percent.

As per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW), India has exceeded the 140 COVID-19 tests per day for per million population, as advised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for comprehensive surveillance of suspected cases, by nearly six times

Centre releases rules for reopening schools guidelines

The guidelines released by the education ministry included thorough cleaning and disinfection of premises, flexibility in attendance, no assessment for up to three weeks, and ensuring a smooth transition from home-based schooling during COVID-19 lockdown to formal schooling.

It also asked states and union territories to frame their own Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for health and safety precautions based on their local requirements.

“Schools must arrange and implement for thorough cleaning and disinfecting of all areas, furniture, equipment, stationery, storage places, water tanks, kitchens, canteen, washroom, laboratories, libraries, on the school campus and ensure airflow in indoor space,” the ministry said in a set of guidelines for the gradual reopening of schools from 15 October.

“Schools may be encouraged to make their own SOPs based on the guidelines issued by states and UTs, keeping in view the safety and physical or social distancing norms, and ensuring that the notices, posters, messages, communication to parents in this regard are prominently displayed and disseminated,” it said.

The ministry recommended that schools adopt flexible attendance and sick leave policies.

“Flexible attendance and sick leave policies may be developed and implemented to encourage students and staff to stay at home when sick. Students may attend schools only with the written consent of parents. Students may opt for online classes rather than physically attend school.”

“There shall be no assessment up to 2-3 weeks of school reopening and use of ICT and online learning shall continue to be encouraged,” it said.

Universities and schools across the country were ordered shut on 16 March to contain the spread of the coronavirus. On 25 March, the Centre announced a nationwide lockdown.

SC gives RBI, Centre week to revise response on loan moratorium

The Supreme Court ordered the Centre and the Reserve Bank of India to place on record the KV Kamath Committee recommendations on debt restructuring necessitated due to the economic stress caused by the pandemic. The court also said the Centre’s affidavit on waiving “interest on interest” on loans up to Rs 2 crore was not satisfactory and must be submitted again.

The Kamath panel had made recommendations for 26 sectors that could be factored by lending institutions while finalising loan resolution plans and had said that banks could adopt a graded approach based on the severity of the coronavirus pandemic in a sector.

The apex court has told the Centre and the RBI to place before it within a week the recommendations and the decisions and other notifications on loan moratorium and also “consider the issues raised by the real estate associations and the power producers”.

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