Srinagar: All the government and recognised private schools are set to reopen in Kashmir and winter zones of Jammu division from Wednesday and resume routine activities of the school children.
The schools will reopen after a gap of more than two month's winter vacation announced by the Government last year.
The schools up to class 5th were closed for winter vacations from December 1 of 2022 followed by class 6th to 8th students from December 12 to February 28 of 2023.
The winter vacation for students from 9th to 12th commenced from December 19 to February 28 of 2023.
As the schools reopen from March 1 of 2023, the teaching staff of high and higher secondary schools, as per the government order, has already reported to their respective schools from February 20 of 2023 for making arrangements regarding preparation of ensuing examinations.
As already reported, the School Education Department (SED) has lined up the annual 2022 (Term II) examination for junior classes while the term II exam of class 8th students already commenced from February 27 of 2023 and will commence on March 10.
The SED has already instructed all the Chief Education Officers (CEOs) to ensure completion of Term II examination of all junior classes by March 20, in order to ensure timely commencement of the class work for the new academic session in schools.
In view of the reopening of the schools, the Directorate of School Education Kashmir (DSEK) has fixed the timings of schools falling within Srinagar Municipal limits from 9am to 2pm, with effect from March 01 of 2023. The new timing has been notified for Srinagar schools to avoid traffic gridlock in the city centre.
As already reported by Greater Kashmir newspaper, the traffic police department Srinagar had recommended to DSEK to change the timing of schools, falling within the city limits, to ease the traffic congestion.
The proposal was sent in view of the bad condition of the roads due to the construction work going on everywhere around the city.
These days, the whole city centre witnesses massive traffic gridlock due to the ongoing construction work at several spots. The city is dug up almost everywhere. From the city centre in Lal Chowk to the Dal Lake and other areas, men and machinery are at work in connection with construction going on under the smart city project, awarded to Srinagar in 2017 with June 2023 as the deadline.
As the work is going on in full swing everywhere it is expected that the city is likely to be jammed for some months throwing a major challenge to regulate the traffic movement within the city.
Talking to Greater Kashmir, Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Traffic (Srinagar), Muzaffar Ahmad Shah said the department will ensure to have minimum disruption for vehicles ferrying school going children.
"But it is a major challenge for us because reopening of schools used to be a normal situation when schools used to reopen after winter vacation but this year it is a different situation as major corridors have narrowed down due to the construction work going in the city," he said.
He said a lot of congestion is being encountered everyday but the traffic department will give all its efforts to ensure smooth flow of traffic, particularly those vehicles carrying school going children.
"We will try our level best to ensure that there is very less congestion on roads so that school going children do not face any inconveniences," Shah said.
With the new timing announced by the government for Srinagar schools, all eyes will be on the regulation of the traffic to ensure smooth passage for school going children.