According to the SOP, not more than 50% of the total students can be present on campus at any given time.

A professor takes a class for a lone student amid low footfall due to the coronavirus pandemic, after authorities allowed re-opening of colleges after a gap of nearly eight months, in Bengaluru, Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2020Image for Representation/PTI
news Education Sunday, December 06, 2020 - 20:05

With universities and colleges reopening across the state on December 7 for final year undergraduate students across all streams, Tamil Nadu government issued a set of Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) guidelines for institutions. Tamil Nadu government allowed students pursuing post-graduation in science and technology stream and students of final year classes for all colleges and Universities including Arts, Science, Technical (including Polytechnic and Hotel Management Institutions) Engineering courses to return to their campuses beginning December 7.

According to the SOP, not more than 50% of the total students can be present on campus at any given time. Institutions should prepare phased reopening and complete rosters for all departments and batches of students accordingly.

If required, students can be allowed to visit their respective departments in a small number to meet and discuss with faculty members. However, institutions will have to make provisions for students opting to study online. The SOP adds, “If some students opt not to attend classes and prefer to study online while staying at home, Institutions are to provide online study material and access to e-resources to such students for teaching-learning.”

In addition to compulsory wearing of face masks at all time, screening at entry and exit points, regular sanitisation, other pointers in the SOP include:

> Teaching hours in a day to be extended, as per requirements of the institution.

> Six-day schedule to be followed so that classes can be conducted in phases and the seating arrangement be made keeping in view the requirements of physical distancing.

> Universities and colleges have to reduce the class size and break them in multiple sections to maintain physical distancing during the classes.

> Depending on the availability of space in classrooms or learning sites, up to 50% students alone are allowed on a rotation basis to attend the classes.

> Since residential students who are coming from different locations, they shall remain in quarantine and self monitor their health for a period of 14 days before being allowed to attend classes (even if they bring a negative test report or the university/college plan to test them on arrival)

> Set up helplines for health, psychological concerns and well-being of students in Universities/Colleges which need to be regularly monitored by counsellors and other identified faculty.

> Form COVID-19 helps groups of students headed by hostel wardens / senior faculty who can identify friends/classmates in need of help and provide the immediate necessary help.

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