As schools reopened across the city, there’s been talk about the SOPs that they must follow
For parents and carers anywhere in the world, this must be the toughest thing to do — having to send their children back to school, even as the pandemic is far from being wiped out from the face of the earth. To prepare their little ones to carry themselves around safely — and to ensure that they make no mistake — must be a day-to-day struggle. While many admit that months of home-schooling were tough — some even complained of their kids losing motivation — their anxiety about the strict observance of safety protocols at campuses is no less real. What if the child dropped their facemask, or forgot to maintain ‘social distance’ from their classmates, maybe during the lunch break? What if they ate something without sanitising their hands? What if there was an asymptomatic carrier of virus amidst them?
As campuses reopened across the city on September 15, there’s been talk about the standard operating procedures (SOPs) that the schools are supposed to follow. Aside from the mandatory temperature checks, the schools have been instructed by the Punjab government to avoid the morning assembly sessions. Besides, students must be seated six feet apart in classrooms, libraries and labs. School vans or other transport vehicles are to strictly abide by the prescribed “50 percent occupancy.”
Creatively enough, some of the private institutions in Lahore have built on this set of rules. Aitchison College, for instance, has announced that “bussing is prohibited” and the canteens shall remain closed. The college also offers an alternative day schedule for students, wherein the boys will be placed in “Cycle A” (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) or “Cycle B” (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday). It is hoped that such innovations upon the given SOPs shall prove beneficial for the students as well as the faculty.