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Odisha schools need to reopen without further delay, opine experts

In a financially disadvantaged state like Odisha, where people are unable to support their families for food during Covid, we need to think about how far it is possible to teach school children through smartphones and the internet.

SNS | Bhubaneswar |

Opening of schools at the earliest with adequate safeguards is imperative in a state like Odisha where the glaring lack of infrastructure, digital techniques, electricity and affordability to purchase smartphones has come out large during the pandemic, said speakers at a seminar here.

Due to lack of infrastructure, necessary equipment etc children’s education was disrupted in a big way and it should not be repeated, they observed.

The seminar on “The state of school education in Odisha at the time of Covid” was jointly organised by the Odisha Right to Education Forum, Save the Children Odisha and Odisha Child Protection Commission. A study conducted in 15 districts of the state was placed.

Dr. Soumyakant Mishra, Senior Manager, Save the Children, Odisha, said that at this point of time the study gives us the direction on how to go about addressing the issue of education and health during emergencies and now particularly how to reopen the school.

Abhijit Bhadra, Asst. Manager of the same organization highlighted the disadvantages of children’s education due to lack of electricity connection, mobile availability, internet connection and proper guidance to teachers and parents.

Anil Pradhan, Convener, Odisha Right to Education Forum, informed that a memorandum has already been submitted to the government.

Based on the findings and recommendations the government needs to reopen schools as soon as possible, he said.

In a financially disadvantaged state like Odisha, where people are unable to support their families for food during Covid, we need to think about how far it is possible to teach school children through smartphones and the internet.

The process that is being experimented will destroy our thinking and analyzing capabilities, noted speakers at the seminar while noting that physical classroom teaching and sharing, playing etc with due precaution is required for the development of a child.