The order will apply to students up to Class 5 across all boards in the state.

Karnataka issues govt order barring online offline classes for students up to class 5PTI : Image for representation
news Education Monday, June 15, 2020 - 20:45

The Karnataka government on Monday finally issued a government order to stop online and offline methods of virtual teaching for students up to Class 5 in the state, till a committee drafts guidelines on it.

The order (number EP 139 PGC 2020) issued by the Education Department said that this will apply to all students studying in schools in the state under state syllabus and other syllabuses like ICSE (Indian Certificate of Secondary Education), CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education) and also international syllabus. 

The order invoked Section 7 of the Karnataka Education Act, 1983 to forbid schools in the state from conducting online classes until the state government issues guidelines for the same.

“In the same way, guidelines are yet to be formed for mass media, technology oriented teaching. In case online teaching has been started, they have to be stopped immediately and in the name of online teaching, no fees can be collected by government, aided or unaided schools,” read the order.

The order signed by M Sharanabasappa, Under Secretary, Education Department mentioned that the guidelines will be scientific and based on age-specific adaptation of online education for students in Classes 6 to 10 which will be determined by a group of experts. 

Professor MK Sridhar will be heading this committee. Sridhar is a senior academic in the state and a member of the draft New Education Policy.

Other members of the committee are academics Gururaj Karajagi, Niranjan Aradhya, officials from NIMHANS (National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro-Sciences), representatives of Early Childhood Organisation, KH Jagadeesh, Department of Public Instruction, Gopalakrishna, MR Maruti, MT Reju, state project director, Samagra Shiksha Abhiyan.

TNM had earlier reported how several schools were continuing online methods of teaching even though Education Minister Suresh Kumar had spoken against it.

While issues with online classes revolved around inability to teach complicated concepts, activists have highlighted how this method will further widen the gap between the economically weaker and the privileged students.

It was on June 10 that the government had first announced that live virtual classes cannot be held for students of lower kindergarten, upper kindergarten and primary classes (Classes 1 to 5). However, at that time, pre-recorded classes were allowed to function.

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