Parents in Karnataka now want their children to study in schools

By Ashoka M K

Bengaluru, Oct 24 (IANS): There was a time when parents were not even ready to think about schools with Covid playing havoc. A campaign was undertaken with a slogan "no school till every child got vaccinated". Now, the situation has reversed. After 19 months of hiatus, parents are forcing school managements to reopen as they want their children not to miss out on academics anymore.

The Karnataka government has given the green signal to the primary schools to begin classes from 1st to 5th standard from October 26. Education Minister B.C. Nagesh has been touring across the state and visiting high schools. At a time when schools are reopening, the lockdown has left challenges for the student community, parents, teachers and school managements as well.

Representational image

Experts say that it will take about 1 to 1.5 years for the children to catch up after losing out on offline classes for 19 months. High school students are really worried as they have to prepare for the Class 10 examinations.

When schools opened, only about 50 per cent of the students studying in Classes 9 and 10 came to school. After one week about 80 per cent attended classes and now it is 100 per cent. It is quite evident that in one month parents realized the importance of physical classes. They want classes to resume. There are positive vibes as jabs for children are coming, say school authorities.

Kiran Prasad, Core Committee Member of Associated Managements of Schools in Karnataka and an educator and founder of Vidya Vaibhav Education Institutes, said that parents know that children are lagging behind. The learning abilities of children are down by 50 to 60 per cent. Reading competencies, quantitative competencies related to mathematics and numeracy are reduced. The fourth standard student is still at the level of Class 1.

Mohammad Umar Farooq, Secretary of Private Schools and Children Welfare Association and Karnataka Union of Minority School Management Association, said that although not all parents are fed up with online classes, there is a good response to the opening of primary schools.

There are other concerns too. Kiran Prasad said that there will definitely be a 10 to 15 per cent dip in the performance of students. The student who scored 90 per cent will come down to 75 to 80 per cent. "In four-five months we have to get them streamlined by fulfilling their academic requirements. It is a very big challenge. Parents are realising it better. They are able to see where their child was and where he is now," he said.

On the other hand, during the first wave of Covid, teachers were laid off and work was given to external vendors. Those with good command over English joined BPOs and other avenues. They have a steady income. Teaching is not a desirable position anymore. Some of the teachers have joined construction work and they do not want to come back to teaching as they are offered meagre salaries.

Sandeep C.S., CEO of Thyagaraju Central School in Bidadi, stated that their institute retained all the teaching staff during the pandemic. Most of the schools which terminated the teachers are finding it difficult to find new ones.

Kempe Gowda A.V., Secretary of ANGV Educational Trust and Devanahalli Private Schools Association, said that school managements are in deep trouble following the lockdowns. "Lot of schools which are not able to repay loans are being threatened by financiers. Though a petition was submitted to the Reserve Bank of India and the Karnataka government it was of no use. The banks have stopped giving loans," he noted.

Riyaz S.K., Administrator of Jawahar English Medium School in Bidar, said the majority of the schools in the region depend only on tuition fees and since two years they have not got any fees. "We are like hand to mouth institutions. When there is nothing on hand, what will go to your mouth?" he asked.

Schools are now reopening and the situation will hopefully be better by January.




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Comment on this article

  • Tabassum, Bengaluru

    Tue, Oct 26 2021

    We are not agreed to send to school for my kid. As they are not yet matured enough to handle the social distance and sanitize themselve . Children s are so eager to go to school as they are fed-up being at home. But as a parent children's health is important then anything in the world right now.

    DisAgree Agree [1] Reply Report Abuse

  • Citizen, Mangalore

    Mon, Oct 25 2021

    This situation is created by dubious and incompetent politicians who only have their best interests in mind and dont apply common sense justbecause it is someone elses children. Its a matter of time before thenext wave/tsunami before havic starts and govr. Will be caught napping as usual. There isno urgency to reopn schools for children upto 9th std. And all the hype is created by 10% of vested interests to reopen . At the end of the day childs safety comes first and it is parent(not govt. ) who will decide when to send them back after vaccination. Data on cases and deaths is under reported andbrushed below the carpet to create a false narrative and sense of security by incompetent politicians

    DisAgree [1] Agree [2] Reply Report Abuse

  • Aradhana, Bangalore

    Mon, Oct 25 2021

    This is keep you inform that already this academic year 6 months ia past rest 5 months is left for the academic year to complete. Let it as till remain with online class for kids. You can do the arrange ment for the school to reopen. From June 2020 . And also kids is are not vaccinated yet and if any thing affected from school like vise some kids suddenly gets cold and get affected with others . Will the school management take all the responsibility for the child .

    DisAgree [2] Agree [5] Reply Report Abuse

  • Ben D'Souza Prabhu, Mangalore, Bombay Bandra now in Canada

    Mon, Oct 25 2021

    Yes it is correct, this is my submission too. We have the encouragement from the majority of litterate parents for this. Hope and pray, the authorities will surely agree to this demand. Let us hope and await eagerly as to their view as well as a definite decision. THANKING ALMIGHTY IN ADVANCE !!!

    DisAgree [3] Agree [2] Reply Report Abuse

  • Rita, Germany

    Mon, Oct 25 2021

    I am sure all are fed up with this Covid system ,schools are open again close and reopen etc.Children too are fed up .First of all they miss classes no proper teaching ,subjects books or onlines are only a horror to children.Parents too have to cooperate ,be at home etc.Big Mess it is.So children miss their campanions ,daily routine ,etc.Once they are in school ,everything will be alright.Sitting at home is a boring business .Only Govt must give clear signs .not today open tomorrow close day after online doesnt work.Everybody will be misled.children will catch up lesson soon .their mind is still fresh.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [2] Reply Report Abuse

  • Shalini, Bangalore

    Mon, Oct 25 2021

    It's hardly 4months to go, hope govt as well parents would have waited nd agreed to open for the next academic for class 1 to 5,i chkd in the school they cannot afford both online and offline, as well no social distancing, kids r going to suffer whole day with mask, just think about kids with cold running nose, kids who r having asthma r wezzing, parents r more concern to reopen school thn govt and school. Other kids too r going to suffer just bcoz of few parents who r eagerly awaiting to send their child to school. Let's not take chance on our precious kids health.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [4] Reply Report Abuse

  • Ammi, Mumbai

    Sun, Oct 24 2021

    Parents have no option between online and offline. All school made it compulsory offline classes. When MIT student have option y not school kids. Cannot they wait more 4 to 5 mths to all kids get vaccine. Then v r ready to send them school. Let have option who want to send their kids school let them their choice but y compulsory all kids do not have same immunity. Go visit . how 6 th to 8th student attending classes in one class 55 student. No mask ., no social distance. In TV news parent have option who do not want to attend class but pratically no option .For small kids it is difficult to wear mask 9am to 5 pm.

    DisAgree [3] Agree [13] Reply Report Abuse

  • nisha, mangalore

    Sun, Oct 24 2021

    Schools are opening Parents are excited . Be glad and happy seeing ur kids tiered and exhausted coming back home after school wearing the MASK whole day long

    DisAgree [2] Agree [10] Reply Report Abuse

  • Maria, Mangalaore

    Sun, Oct 24 2021

    It's great schools are opening .But the fact IS all schools will COMPLETELY FAIL in following the covid protocols..The parents were so concerned while taking their kids around to parks mall beaches...They were extra protective checking on their kids if the have own MASK properly now are thy going to have track on their kids when IN SCHOOL kids will be playing ,eating and running around ...Now all parents are Ok for their tiny tots to.wear mask the whole day one is concerned ...Please do send ur kids without mask because either the teachers or principal wont be behind ur kids to check..we elders feel suffocated with mask ...But Kids really dont...????? ASK UR SELF. Their just 1st to 5th grade kids below 10yrs HOW SAFE ....COVID IS LESS NOT COMPLETELY GONE..

    DisAgree [4] Agree [10] Reply Report Abuse

  • satish lal, Bengaluru

    Sun, Oct 24 2021

    I have lost my father already. I don't want to send my son to school. The mgt in kengeri school asking him from tomorrow all day school with no social distancing.

    DisAgree [2] Agree [6] Reply Report Abuse

  • Suresh kumar, Mangalore

    Sun, Oct 24 2021

    When everyone has put down their protective gears... When contact tracing is thrown out of the window. When covid fatigue is at its height. When cinemas are running to full halls. When navarathri just got completed with jam packed crowds at temples. When new variant is making up for 10 percent of cases in uk. Our state government has taken a great decision- opening up schools for young kids. Better be safe than sorry they say... Hmmm... Seems nobody is listening

    DisAgree [4] Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • Dev, Mangalore

    Sun, Oct 24 2021

    After a long term illogical and unscientific lockdowns reopening will have to face apprehension from parents due to daily dose of panic created by media. Kids under 25 are never in any danger from the virus and they never need any unproven vaccines too along with panic and fear continuing protocols like masks, sanitizer and distance too. Teachers carrying out unscientific mandates and shields serve no purpose too other than continuing pandemic scare without any scientific evidence. Time to say goodbye to pandemic scare which is nothing but a seasonal cold and flu. As 80% people have antibodies and herd immunity has been achieved according to ICMR survey nothing to worry about unless vaccine mafia wants to continue the profitable business through targeting kids as guinea pigs.

    DisAgree [1] Agree [3] Reply Report Abuse

  • Agnes, Mangalore

    Sun, Oct 24 2021

    This is an exceptional pandemic situation and exceptional things are expected. But there is no need to take extraordinary risks just to accommodate school administration and subject children to needless life risk in the name of education. All protocols fail when it comes to little playful children.

    DisAgree [10] Agree [16] Reply Report Abuse

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