West Bengal govt shelves plan for virtual classrooms

A day after announcing one week- long virtual classrooms on DD Bangla for Class 9 to 12 students from April 7, West Bengal Education Minister Partha Chatterjee on Saturday said the state has shelved the plan for the time being due to logistical reasons.

Chatterjee told reporters in videoconferencing that while the state had fixed the 4-5 pm time slot on certain subjects for class 9 to 12 students in state-run/aided schools, that timing was not mutually acceptable to both teachers and guardians.

“Even as the Education department had booked the 4-5 pm time slot on DD Bangla for a week from April 7, a section of guardians and teachers have informed the timing is not okay with them and they are suggesting separate time slots, which cannot be accommodated.

“In such a situation, we have decided not to go ahead with the plan to hold virtual classes from April 7 as had been announced,” the minister said.

With the suspension of classes in schools due to coronavirus pandemic since March 16, Chatterjee told reporters on Friday that from April 7, during 4-5 pm, students from class 9 to 12 will sit before their TV sets and switch on the DD Bangla channel where in classroom atmosphere some well- known teachers will give lecture on particular subjects.

“Unfortunately we have to shelve this plan which was aimed for helping the students missing their classes,” the minister said on Saturday.

Chatterjee said the other decision to ask students to submit their home activity report during the period of suspension of classes till April 14, will continue to be in force.

Model questions for the activity report can be downloaded from state school education department portal by teachers of respective institution and sent to students via Whatsapp, mail after modification by the concerned teacher if they think so, he said.

The questions will be framed as per the curriculum of the first summative exam in every school.

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