A high-level review meeting attended by Telangana’s Chief Minister KCR held on the 19th June 2021, witnessed some of the major and unexpected decisions by the Telangana cabinet.
After examining the reports submitted by Health and Medical Department officials on the COVID-19 situation in India, the government of Telangana lifted the complete lockdown in the state and passed orders for the same. This decision came in after seeing the drastic decrease in the cases but that is not all.
The Telangana government went a step ahead and decided to re-open the educational institutions from the 1st of July, which came as a shocked many. The outbreak of this news has received several mixed reactions while some call it an “irresponsible” decision while others welcomed the decision. But, it is important for us to weigh all the pros and cons before coming to conclusions on the decision made by the government.
This is one of the most worrying aspects as children below the age of 18 are not vaccinated. Leaving the vaccination, we do not even have a proper vaccine that is safe and appropriate for young kids. In such a scenario, no one is safe and exposing kids to an outside environment and making them sit in a single room with 10s of other students can be dangerous.
Though it’s disturbing to think of, we cannot rule out the fact that the third wave is probably around the corner and sending students to schools and colleges is only going to make things worse. There is a high possibility that cases would increase once educational institutions would open (just like how it happened before the second wave) and the third wave may arrive earlier than expected, making students the victims of a deadly pandemic.
Inappropriate COVID-19 Behavior
When we talk about educational institutions, schools and students of young age play a huge part in it. Students of high school, UGC, and PG may follow some social distancing and other COVID-19 appropriate behaviour but expecting that from young kids is highly impractical. Kids do not understand the seriousness of the situation and staff cannot monitor them all the time. In such cases, young kids will be highly vulnerable if something goes South.
Not Everyone is Privileged Enough
Looking at the brighter side, because of this pandemic, several students have lost their touch with academics. Many could not afford smartphones or PCs which led to absence of classes for more than a year now. For such students who are at a loss, the physical functioning of classes can help them get a hold of their academics and also for those students who find it hard to concentrate on online classes can regain their confidence too with online classes.
Parents are unwilling to send their kids to school and some institutions are planning to conduct only exams from the 1st of July while having classes online, which can be a good sign too as exams pave the way for social distancing. But we are yet to hear an official confirmation from all the institutions about what happens from the first of July.
There are two sides to everything and even this decision of re-opening educational institutions from July 1st has its own perks and drawbacks. While it keeps students at greater risk but we cannot let them sit at homes forever. Instead, we should try to adapt to the situations as we clearly know the pandemic is here to stay for a while. However, the government ordered institutions to open only after being “fully prepared” and we are yet to see the guidelines that our educational department comes up with and their verdict on how the institutions should conduct the classes.