Try odd-even to conduct classes: SOPs for Goa schools

A ceiling of 12 students in a standard-sized classroom, regular deep cleaning of common spaces, no crowding and even the liberty to schools to test an odd-even formula for conducting classes, are some of the SOPs devised for schools by the Goa government, which are scheduled to open from November 21 for Class 10 and 12 students.

The SOPs which were formally issued to schools late on Tuesday also mandates a ban on visitors to school premises, maintenance of a six feet distance between students in classrooms, sensitisation to Covid-19 precautions and even urges students to not share their tiffins and drinking water, as well as personal articles like books, compass boxes, etc.

While sports and physical education classes have been banned, the SOPs urges schools to conduct yoga classes, with students being given the liberty to use their personal yoga mats.

“In a class there should not be more than 12 students. In case, the size of a classroom is small, classes may be held in rooms having a larger area such as a computer room, library, laboratory, with a physical distance of six feet between the students,” the SOPs state.

“Odd-even formula for classes can also be considered. Running schools into shifts in case of high enrolment schools can also be considered by reducing the time duration of school-hours per shift, such that the school is able to manage with the same set of teachers in overall school hours,” the health protocol states.

Earlier this month. Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, who is also the Education Minister, had announced that schools in the state would be restarted from November 21 for Class X and XII students, after seeking suggestions from education sector stakeholders including experts, parents, teachers, head masters and school managements in the state.

The SOPs issued by the Goa government, which are largely based on central government guidelines, have also urged school managements to inculcate a sense of awareness among students, about Covid-19 health protocols and details some of the dos and dont’s for students of Class 10 and 12, whose academic year begins from November 21.

“Students should not exchange drinking water, note books, text books, paper, pencil compass box, ruler, pen, science journal, homework book, assignment book, bags, umbrella and any other thing among themselves,” the SOPs state, adding that students should also be encouraged to “bring and eat home-cooked and nutritious food and avoid sharing food and other utensils with others”.

Schools have been also instructed to form special ‘task teams’ to ensure observance of the SOPs.

“Task teams such as an emergency care support/response team, general support team for all stakeholders and commodities support team, hygiene inspection team, etc, with earmarked responsibilities will be helpful. Teachers/students and other stakeholders may be identified to be the members of the task force,” the SOPs also said.