Major twist in Puducherry...No school reopening on July 16: What about Tamil Nadu?

Exactly a day ahead of the scheduled reopening of schools, the Union Territory of Puducherry has on Thursday announced that the schools won't be reopened in the territory as it battles the COVID-19 pandemic. The territory has recently announced that the schools will be resumed for classes 9 to 12 on July 16. Its neighbour Tamil Nadu has also planned to monitor the parameters taken by the Union territory in reopening the schools, that are kept closed for more than a year. 

Puducherry Chief Minister Rangasamy has recently announced that the schools for classes 9 to 12 and colleges in the Union territory will be resumed on July 16. The government has been taking measures of framing the Standard Operating Procedures that are needed to be adhered to by the educational institutions after their resumptions. While the government carried out the measures, the decision to reopen the schools amid the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic had drawn huge objections from the political parties and experts. 

When the BJP ruling Union territory was gearing up for the significant relaxation from the lockdown, it was demanded to consider its decision of reopening the schools. ADMK party, which observes alliance with the BJP, has also slammed the Puducherry government for deciding to reopen the schools. According to reports, ADMK's Secretary of Puducherry East Anbalagan has on Wednesday said that the Covid pandemic isn't under control in the territory as several people are getting affected by the viral infection. 

Anbalagan had urged the Puducherry government to reconsider its decision of reopening the schools. He noted that students would face a threat to their health if the schools are reopened. He further asked the government to obtain suggestions from the medical experts before deciding to reopen the schools. The reports say that though the Chief Minister had decided to reopen the schools at the backdrop of a decline in the COVID-19 cases, his decision had met with flak as the pandemic is still not brought under the control. 

The Chief Minister has earlier this week announced the resumption of schools and days after his announcement, Puducherry Minister Namassivayam has on Thursday said that reopening of schools will be deferred in the Union territory. He said that the schools and colleges won't be reopened in Puducherry and cited that they won't be reopened until Covid-19 comes under control. With the announcement, the students of Puducherry will continue learning online with having no sight of physical classes. 

Earlier, after the Puducherry government has decided to reopen the schools, the Tamil Nadu government has planned to observe how the school resumption is going to work out in the neighbouring Union territory before taking a final call to reopen the schools in the state. Tamil Nadu School Education Minister Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi has said that the state government is closely observing Puducherry reopen the schools.

It was said that the measures and parameters taken by the schools in Puducherry will be monitored and analyzed by Tamil Nadu to take a call on implementing those measures to reopen the schools in Tamil Nadu. The minister has also said that a report would be submitted to Chief Minister MK Stalin on the measures taken for school reopening in Puducherry. By citing that reopening schools in Tamil Nadu may take some time, the minister said that parents should feel comfortable in sending their children to the schools. 

The Tamil Nadu government has been filled with demands from the private schools' association which claimed that there is only a 20% reach on online classes and the only way is proper classroom education. The association has also asserted that private schools are ready to take classes on a shift basis. According to reports, with the view of analyzing their demands and to understand the current situation to decide whether or not to reopen the schools in the state, Chief Minister MK Stalin will be holding a discussion with the authorities of the school education ministry on Friday - July 16 and it has been expected that Stalin will decide the school reopening by considering the current state of Covid-19 spread and the issues faced by the students.