Health Ministry issues guidelines on conducting examinations during COVID-19 pandemic

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The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, has issued guidelines on preventive measures to be followed while conducting examinations during COVID-19 pandemic.

“Only those examination centers which are outside the containment zone shall be allowed to function. Staff, examinees from containment zones shall not be permitted,” read the guidelines.

They said such examinees shall be given an opportunity to undertake the examination through other means or the Universities and other educational institutions will schedule exams of such students later.

“Universities, educational institutions and examination conducting authorities should plan out the examination schedule in a staggered manner to avoid overcrowding at any examination center on any day,” read the guidelines.

The SoPs have been issued at a time when most of the universities and colleges are planning to conduct the end semester exams in offline mode. Already, students are appearing in various national level competitive exams as well which commenced during the past few days.

The health ministry has issued the guidelines keeping in view the rush of students and their parents besides the staff at examination centres till the entire duration of the exam.

“It is vital to plan and conduct these examinations, while following specific preventive measures,” read the guidelines.

The students, parents and the staff have been asked to follow the generic preventive measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19.

“Physical distancing of at least 6 feet to be followed as far as feasible, Use of face covers/masks to be made mandatory and practice frequent hand washing with soap for at least 40-60 seconds) even when hands are not visibly dirty,” read the guidelines.

The health ministry guidelines have also focused on keeping proper seating arrangements for the students keeping in view the physical distancing norms.

“Appropriate arrangements for personal protection gears like masks, other logistic like hand sanitizers, soap, sodium hypochlorite solution should be made available by Universities, educational institutions and examination conducting authorities to the staff and students as per requirements,” read the guidelines further.