Donning uniforms for the first time in seven months, around 13 lakh students of government and private schools of Kashmir Monday resumed classes after remaining shut since August 5 last year due following the abrogation of Article 370 and winter vacation.
In more than 14,000 government and private schools of Kashmir division, nearly 1,30,000 students returned to academics after remaining closed since August 5, 2019 following the abrogation of Article 370 of the Indian constitution.
An official at the Directorate of School Education Kashmir (DSEK) said in Kashmir division there were 11,308 government schools that include 837 High Schools, 410 Higher Secondary Schools, 4225 Middle Schools and 5836 Primary Schools.
He said in these institutions more than 6.48 lakh students were enrolled for the current academic year.
President of Private School Association of Jammu and Kashmir (PSAJK), G N Var told Rising Kashmir that more than 6.50 lakh students from over 2700 private schools were enrolled in the ongoing academic session.
The academics in the schools of Kashmir division were stopped in August last year following the abrogation of Article 370.
In the last week of August 2019, J&K government said high schools in Kashmir would reopen after remaining shut for more than three weeks since August 5. However, no academic activity was held.
Gradually, the government ordered reopening of higher secondary schools and colleges as well.
While the schools continued to remain deserted following the abrogation of Article 370, the management of various private and government schools started asking students to collect video lessons and assignments.
In the second week of December 2019, the government ordered winter vacation in Kashmir valley till February 23.
In this academic year, after the schools remain closed for a month, local volunteers established community schools for local and non-local students that provided respite to them to secure their academic year.
In that academic year, schools in Kashmir witnessed less than 100 academic days.
According to the officials of the Education department, earlier the educational institutes were supposed to carry only 180 days an academic year.
However, talking to Rising Kashmir, Director of School Education Kashmir (DSEK), Muhammad Younis Malik said “From this academic session we have decided to carry 200 working days for the students of primary level and 220 days for the middle school students.”
He said under the Right to Education (RTE) policy, DSEK has to ensure that students attend all academic days.
Malik on Monday also visited various schools of south and central Kashmir and expressed satisfaction over the arrangements put in place for the resumption of academic activities in the educational institution across Kashmir division after the winter break.
Meanwhile, the students were excited to resume class work.
A student of Kothi Bagh, Mansha said, “I have not been to school for more than seven months. Today, after resuming classes and meeting my classmates, I am feeling happy.”
Meanwhile, officials said the government had kept security arrangements in place for the students to attend schools.
The teachers expressed hope of a good year ahead so that students get uninterrupted education, saying the education of the children suffered last year.