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After nearly two years, Gujarat will reopen pre-schools and anganwadis

Gujarat Education Minister Jitu Vaghani said, "This is for the first time in the last two years of the pandemic when pre-schools and anganwadis will be reopened"

After nearly two years, Gujarat will reopen pre-schools and anganwadis
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The state administration has decided to allow anganwadi centres, pre-schools, and kindergartens to reopen across Gujarat from Thursday, nearly two years after the COVID-19 outbreak began and amid a drop in new cases.

Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel made this decision after reviewing the COVID-19 situation, Education Minister Jitu Vaghani stated on Monday.

Gujarat reported 1,274 COVID-19 cases and 13 deaths on Sunday, bringing the total number of cases to 12,15,290 and the death toll to 10,808. Gujarat has 14,211 active cases as of Sunday, according to the state health department.

"This is for the first time in the last two years of the pandemic when pre-schools and anganwadis will be reopened," Vaghani told reporters in Gandhinagar.

As a result of the coronavirus-induced lockdown in Gujarat, all educational institutions have been advised to discontinue holding offline classes at their locations after March 2020.

The state administration eventually authorised schools and colleges to continue offline lessons, while pre-schools and anganwadis (rural child care centres) remained closed due to toddler safety concerns.

"The chief minister has given a go-ahead to reopen pre-schools, kindergartens and anganwadis in Gujarat from February 17. They remained shut for almost two years," Vaghani said, adding that the consent of parents is needed for sending their wards to pre-schools, kindergartens and anganwadis.

"From February 17, anganwadis and pre-schools can start imparting education at their premises by following the SOPs issued earlier. Officials handling anganwadi operations and owners of pre-school classes need to make necessary arrangements to restart the education," he said.

According to the minister, the closing of pre-schools in the last two years has resulted in a considerable loss of education for toddlers.

"The state government is preparing an action plan to overcome this issue of learning loss in children as they will take admission in standard 1 without getting any pre-school education," the minister said.

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