Source: The Indian Express
More than three-fourths of parents across the state chosen that they were in favor of schools reopening in a statewide survey that had nearly 2.5 lakh respondents. Highlighting the digital divide, parents in rural and urban areas differed in amount on the question of whether it is time to switch back to physical classrooms. While 88% of parents in villages are in favor of schools resuming proper classes, the reliable proportion in cities is 78%. The results are part of an online survey by the State Council of Educational Research and Training to assess parents’ readiness to allow children to return to a physical classroom.
Not surprisingly, parents in rural and semi-urban areas, with poor power and internet substructure, are more eager than their city complements for schools to reopen. Of the 2.5 lakh parents across the state who participated in the survey, 1,40,424 were from rural Maharashtra, 1,00,727 from cities and the rest from semi-urban areas. Apart from a widening learning gap, online-only classes have resulted in higher dropout rates, especially of girls, a consistent increase in child labor and caused mental health issues, particularly in villages. Rural students suffered higher loss of learning
because of poor internet connectivity. The reopening of schools will be decided by seven-member committees set up in villages that have been
Covid-free for a month. Along with keeping Covid protocols in place,
parental agreement is a must to start physical schools. Classes each day cannot exceed four hours and only main subjects will have to be taught. Each class should not have more than 20 students and presence is not compulsory. The consents will be for Classes VIII-XII.