rinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir administration on Sunday said that Higher educational institutes and Skill development centres will be considered for phased reopening after July 31 subject to the vaccination status of students and staff in the Union territory.
Meanwhile, all government and private educational institutes have been permitted to seek personal attendance of limited vaccinated staff for administrative purposes.
This development in the educational sector comes following significant decline in the number of fresh COVID-19 cases and deaths in J&K, where 179 coronavirus positive cases, including 117 from Kashmir and 62 from Jammu, were reported on Saturday. One person also lost his life to the deadly disease in Jammu on Saturday.
The decision was taken after a detailed review of the prevailing COVID-19 situation during a meeting that was chaired by J&K Chief Secretary Dr Arun Kumar Mehta in his capacity as chairman of the State Executive Committee of the Department of Disaster Management, Relief Rehabilitation and Reconstruction on Sunday.
“A significant improvement had been made by some districts with respect to incidence of COVID-19 cases, vaccination and compliance to COVID Appropriate Behavior even as there is need for further improvement in the interest of public health in all districts,” an order issued by the State Executive Committee (SEC) read.
It said that there is a need to continue with the existing COVID containment measures in view of uneven trend of fresh positive cases. However, the SEC said that public and private educational institutes are permitted to seek personal attendance of limited vaccinated staff for administrative purposes.
“Higher educational institutions and skill development centers have been considered for phased reopening for physical classes after July 31 subject to the COVID-19 vaccinations status of students and staff,” the order added.
It further said that all the Deputy Commissioners have been directed to focus on the positivity rate in their respective jurisdiction and ensure strict compliance of COVID-19 Appropriate Behavior.
The administration in May 2 this year ordered the closure of all universities, colleges, schools, and coaching centres in the Union Territory though teaching and non-teaching staff were asked to attend schools and colleges. But, the J&K administration later allowed teaching and non-teaching staff to stay home in view of a surge in COVID-19 cases in Jammu and Kashmir. The closure of the educational institutes was extended several times since then till July 31 to curtail the spread of COVID-19.
Teachers, however, are conducting online classes from home in the valley though many students alleged that they were unable to attend these classes due to the non-availability of smartphones.