Bengaluru: With COVID-19 cases rising among students in various schools and colleges, Karnataka Primary and Secondary Education Minister BC Nagesh said the government will not backtrack from stopping exams and schools if the situation arises.
He, however, maintained that the experts were of the opinion that there was no problem in holding regular off-line classes.
“We will not backtrack if a need arises to stop exams and schools. However, in the present situation, all the experts are of the opinion that there is no problem,” Nagesh told reporters here.
The minister said the government was closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation on an hourly basis. He added that the government will make alternative arrangements with a view to avoid any problem.
“If required we will stop exams. However, the Standard Operating Procedure is maintained very strictly in the exams because we make sitting arrangements maintaining physical distance,” Nagesh said.
The Minister asked people not to panic as it will impact the academic activities of children.
“There is no need for people to panic because this year we started regular schools after a year of lockdown. In case schools are shut again then it will be difficult to bring back children to the classes,” Nagesh said.
He, however, assured parents that the education department will take stringent measures in case it is felt that the COVID-19 situation is going to impact children’s health.
The statement came amid rising COVID cases emerging among students. A large number of students and staff of a medical college in Hubballi-Dharwad tested positive for COVID-19.
The pandemic clusters emerged among students of residential schools in Bengaluru rural, Mysuru and Chikkamagaluru.
Sources said there was a protest by students in an autonomous college in Bengaluru on Monday morning following reports about the COVID-19 outbreak in the students’ hostel.