"As COVID-19 cases drop in severity, colleges reopening in Delhi are being met with both government supervision and divided public opinions."
As the first semester of the upcoming academic year approaches, several higher educational institutions within the nation’s capital have decided to phase out remote learning slowly. Notably, Delhi University plans to reopen its college campuses from 15 September. The regulations undertaken by these initial openings will be fundamental. This is due to the fact that many universities will likely follow in their footsteps over the coming months. Ambedkar University and Delhi Technological University have also shown willingness to partially begin offline lessons.
As of now, in-person classes will still be optional and infrequent. DU only plans to resume offline classes for essential exercises such as labs and practicals until further notice. Furthermore, vaccination rates have an undeniable effect on many of the safety measures taken by schools. DU’s entire faculty will be fully vaccinated by the time of reopening. Furthermore, the varsity has strongly recommended that all students take at least one dose of the vaccine.
Delhi University’s Vice-Chancellor Joshi has commented on the situation, asserting that the administration is fully aware of and prepared for the risks involved. As quoted, “We do not want to open the floodgates. We are starting with final year UG/PG students, particularly those whose subjects demand practical requirements. we will assess the situation in the days to come, and if everything remains under control, then we will further reopen for the remaining students of different streams and years.”
Delhi Governmental Guidelines Regarding Reopening of Colleges
The DDMA (Delhi Disaster Management Authority) has recently officially authorised plans for colleges (governmental and private) reopening in Delhi on 1 September 2021. Thus, the governmental body overseeing the transition has released safety mandates for institutions in the form of an SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). Hence, Delhi-based students can refer to the following guidelines below regarding reopening.
- Social distancing: Colleges must comply with government-issued social distancing measures and must ensure that crowding within the campus does not occur. According to the guidelines, rooms must only be 50% full at most. Universities so far have accomplished this through operating in a staggered manner.
- Sanitization: Furthermore, the DDMA has stressed the importance of rigorous disinfecting of all shared areas, including transportation.
- COVID-19 Vaccines: Vaccination of all staff is a top priority, and proper record-keeping of such information is essential.
Several mandates originate from nationally announced safety measures. Furthermore, these guidelines will likely change in the near future as more colleges open across the city.