As the Karnataka government is likely to reopen colleges for the current academic year on November 2, the higher education department is enforcing some strict measures to recover the academic days lost due to Covid-19.
The academic year for undergraduate courses was supposed to commence in June/July. The students are presently attending online classes.
Degree colleges and universities will function on second and fourth Saturdays, which were earlier holidays. The system will be changed at least for the next two years.
According to the highly placed sources in the department, the academic calendar framed by a committee of sitting vice chancellors made a recommendation in this regard. “If necessary, the classes will be conducted even on Sundays,” said a senior department official.
“To recover the 90 active academic days per semester, it is necessary to conduct classes on six-day week basis,” said the VC of one of the state-run universities who was in the committee.
Officials from the department said that they will convene a meeting by next week to finalise the standard operating procedure (SOP). “There should be one common SOP for all universities. Later, universities can frame their own SOP, keeping that as the basis”, the official said.
The universities are planning to conduct classes in a phased manner and also based on priority.
“It is better to conduct classes department wise. For instance, first three days for arts stream and next three days for science and commerce stream. This will help to maintain social distancing on the campus,” said Prof T D Kemparaju, VC of Bengaluru North University.
“We will conduct a health check-up for all students in hostels and also those who work in the hostel kitchens,” said the VC of another university.
“At the hostels, we will need to accommodate one student per room. Earlier, three students used to be accommodated in a room,” said another VC.
Some of the universities and colleges have started communicating to students and asking them to get a Covid-19 test done before attending classes and submit the same to the heads of the respective departments.