KATHMANDU, JANUARY 17

Schools across all local bodies inside Kathmandu valley have started reopening. They had been closed for at least 10 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

On March 24, the government imposed a blanket lockdown in a bid to subdue the spread of coronavirus, which hit the education sector the hardest. Since then all schools have remained shut, except those operating online classes.

Ending the months long closure, schools have started calling students of grades VIII, IX and X, who had been taking online classes to be physically present at the schools.

Majority of schools which have reopened are from areas that are located around the outskirts of the valley. The government in mid-November had given authority to the local governments to allow schools to reopen as per the COVID situation in the area.

Municipalities and metropolitan cities had then gradually allowed schools to reopen.

However, a few large schools, despite the local levels’ permission have yet not reopened.

For instance Lalitpur Metropolitan City had in December first week allowed all schools to reopen after corornavirus cases started declining. However, a few large schools inside the core urban areas have yet to reopen.

Many schools inside Kathmandu Metropolitan City have already started operating after permission from the local government.

At Madhyapur Thimi Municipality, local governments have not given permission, but many schools in the area have started operating on their own.

Tika Ram Puri, chairman of Private and Boarding School Organisation of Nepal said KMC should now allow schools to reopen to bring uniformity in the education sector.

“We cannot allow students of one area to study in schools, while students in other areas are deprived of education.”

Similar remark was made by Rituraj Sapkota, chairman of National PABSON. “Kathmandu metropolis and all the remaining local governments which have not reopened school should now reopen them abiding by social distancing rules and proper sanitization procedures.” He also said that the majority of schools across the country has started reopening.

KMC’s Spokesperson Ishwor Man Dangol said that the local government will come up with a decision to allow schools to reopen within a few days.