The Ministry of Education (MoE) has decided to relocate the students from Phuentsholing to Punakha. The ministry has also given options to parents and students to choose from the 190 seats available in various schools in the country.
During the meet-the-press, Education Minister, Jai Bir Rai, said there are 1,096 boarding seats available, and if students want to go there and study, then the opportunity will be given to them. Some of the students have already taken the opportunity with consent from their parents. Another option given to parents and students is to choose the schools where they have relatives, so the students can attend schools as day scholars. The ministry has also cross checked with those students who are okay to take up online classes and has come up with the solutions as well.
In terms of preparation, by August 2021, all the students from class IX to XII will be relocated in Punakha after undergoing 2 weeks of quarantine. The schools have also identified the quarantine centers, and the students from the red zone and yellow zone will be segregated.
According to MoE, if there is a need to relocate students from the dzongkhags were the COVID-19 is active, then it has already identified as where to relocate them. MoE also pointed out that it would be difficult to relocate the 30,000 students from the southern dzongkhags if the pandemic rages on.
For now, the main focus is given to online teaching and learning. Classes from PP-VIII students in Phuentsholing are to continue with their online classes.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister Dasho (Dr) Lotay Tshering said almost 200 students have already opted for boarding schools and another about 100 students will join them.
Lyonchhen said there are about 62 schools in the southern dzongkhags amounting to about 30,000 students, which will be very difficult to relocate, given the fact that even adjusting a few number of students in different schools is difficult.