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Unlock 6.0 Allows Schools

With the Unlock-6.0 announcement, the State Government has allowed partial reopening of schools for students of Classes IX to XII after 15 November. 

Department of School and Mass Education will come up with Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and specific date for opening of schools. All academic institutions across the state, however, would remain closed till 30 November. 

This notifications are part of its ‘Unlock-6’ guidelines, which were approved by Chief Secretary Asit Kumar Tripathy. 

Academic institutions, including coaching centers, have been closed since March in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. The notification said notwithstanding closure of academic institutions, the authorities are permitted to conduct examinations (academic, competitive and entrance tests), evaluation and other administrative activities. 

Online/distance learning will continue to be permitted and encouraged, it said, adding, that the departments concerned may permit teaching and non-teaching staff to be called to schools for online classes. 

Educational Institutions under Department of Higher Education will be permitted to open only for research scholars (PhD) and post graduate students in science and technology streams requiring laboratory work, the order said. 

With regard to reopening places of worship, the State Government said local authorities may issue such permits with appropriate restrictions and safety protocols, based on assessment of the COVID-19 situation. 

Cinema halls, swimming pools, entertainment complexes, theatres, auditoriums, assembly halls and similar places will continue to remain shut. 

On further assessment, appropriate decisions will be taken on 16 November on reopening these establishments, the order said. 

Open air theatres and similar places may be allowed to operate, subject to compliance of health protocols. Marriage-related gatherings will be permitted with a maximum ceiling of 200 persons, and not more than 50 persons are allowed at funerals, it said. 

Large social, political, sports, religious congregations are prohibited till 30 November, except Election Commission of India approved meetings for bye-elections, the state government order said. There is, however, no restriction on Inter-State and Intra-State Movement, notification pointed out.