Schools have opened in most states after a long period of pandemic. Although still small classes have not started in many states. The main reason behind this is the possibility of the infection spreading again. It is believed that due to the sudden increase in the crowd, the children should not get infected. However, from time to time epidemiologists have dismissed this apprehension. After the outbreak of the second wave slowed down, there were suggestions from experts that where the spread of infection has weakened, schools can be opened with caution. After this, in July, many states like Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, Chhattisgarh, Bihar, Punjab took steps towards opening schools in a phased manner. In the first phase, students of classes IX to XII were allowed to come to school. Many states had to take a decision not to call classes up to class VIII in view of increasing cases in some states.
Children under the age of twelve are also believed to be more at risk of spreading the infection because immunization of children in this age group has not started yet. Then again and again the fear of a third wave was also raised. Due to this, there was a fear among people about sending children to school. However, now children’s vaccines are also almost ready in India and will be started soon. But it will take a long time to vaccinate children across the country. In such a situation, the question is, till when the children should not be sent to school? A recent World Bank report in this regard seems to be comforting. This report states that even if children are not vaccinated on a large scale, there is no danger. The emphasis in the report is that it is necessary to take the children out of the vicious cycle of online studies being done at home, by whatever means. Due to this children are becoming physically and mentally ill. Serious problems like depression, anxiety, violence are surrounding them. Incidents of suicide are on the rise. Therefore, the danger of the epidemic has now become a bigger threat than the infection.
It is true that the epidemic threat was even more serious earlier because no one knew anything about its origin, spread and treatment. But now a lot has come out about this. Vaccination is taking place on a large scale. People have also started adopting preventive measures out of fear. The experience of one and a half years has given me an opportunity to learn a lot about dealing with the epidemic and the crises arising out of it. Although practical difficulties can arise with young children, we now have ways to overcome them. If precautions are taken in schools and efforts are made to inculcate the habit of following Corona preventive behavior in children, then there is nothing to be afraid of sending them to school. The role that schools play in the development and personality formation of children is not possible in the online education system sitting at home. Therefore, there should be no hesitation in opening schools now. Just be sure to follow the standard procedure of the rules, it remains to be seen.