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Unlock 4: States can permit schools to call 50% of staff, students of 9th to 12th can voluntarily visit school

The Ministry of Home Affairs on Saturday came out with Unlock 4 guidelines which said that states and UTs may permit up to 50 per cent of teaching and non-teaching staff to be called to the schools at a time for online teaching or tele-counselling and related work from September 21.

The guidelines said that students of classes 9 to 12 may be permitted to visit their schools, in areas outside the containment zones only, on a voluntary basis, for taking guidance from their teachers and this will be subject to the written consent of their parents or guardians.

While giving these relaxations in areas outside the containment zones only with effect from September 21, the ministry said a Standard Operating Procedures will be issued by Health Ministry.

The MHA also said that schools, colleges, educational and coaching institutions will continue to remain closed for students and regular class activity up to September 30 and online/distance learning shall continue to be permitted and shall be encouraged.

An official release said that the decisions had been taken with extensive consultation with states and union territories.

The guidelines said skill or entrepreneurship training will be permitted from September 21 subject to SOPs in National Skill Training Institutes, Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs), short-term training centres registered with National Skill Development Corporation or State Skill Development Missions or other Ministries of Government of India or State Governments.

The Ministry said that National Institute for Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development (NIESBUD), Indian Institute of Entrepreneurship (IIE) and their training providers will also be permitted.

Higher Education Institutions can permit for research scholars (Ph.D.) and post-graduate students of technical and professional programmes requiring laboratory/ experimental works.

“These will be permitted by the Department of Higher Education (DHE) in consultation with MHA, based on the assessment of the situation, and keeping in view incidence of COVID-19 in the States and UTs,” the MHA said.

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