New Delhi: Schools in the national capital were advised to increase their sanitisation capacity, be more alert and avoid crowding on the premises as the Delhi Directorate of Education issued fresh guidelines amid a spike in Covid cases.
The new set of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), issued Thursday, also instructed schools to guide students to not share their lunch and stationery with others. Schools are also supposed to ask students for Covid-related symptoms among their family members on a daily basis.
The institutions have been asked to delegate staff at all entry gates to check and ‘ensure that no symptomatic staff, student or guest enter the campus’.
The SOPs listed 11 symptoms of Covid including loss of taste or smell, fatigue, cough, fever, nausea, and congestion and also directed schools to ensure the availability of a quarantine room in case of an emergency.
Schools have also been advised to immediately report Covid cases to their respective zonal or district authorities and to suitably close or cordon off the school.
Signed by Director of Education Himanshu Gupta, the SOP has been issued to ‘prevent the rising spread of Covid’ and address the ‘serious concern about the health of school students and staff’.
According to data shared by the city department Thursday, Delhi logged 965 fresh Covid cases with a positivity rate of 4.71 per cent. The national capital’s R value – an indicator of how fast the infection is spreading – had also increased to 2.12 in April from 0.7 last month.
Ensure students, staff are vaccinated
The heads of schools have been instructed to hold meetings with Parent-Teacher Associations and school management committees to discuss the prevailing Covid conditions in schools and encourage vaccination among students and parents.
Principals have also been instructed to make sure that all eligible students and staff members are vaccinated at the earliest.
The DoE had also issued an advisory last week after students in various Delhi schools tested positive for Covid. “We are keeping an eye on the situation. If need be, we will bring in a standard operating procedure for Delhi schools,” Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had said.
Instructing everyone to follow Covid protocols, the advisory had stated that students, teachers, and other school staff should wear masks at all times. The DoE said social distancing should be maintained and hands washed regularly and disinfected with sanitisers. The department also advised schools to renew efforts on awareness.
(Edited by Monami Gogoi)