Many University of Delhi (DU) colleges are holding classes in open ground and also in batches to ensure physical distancing as a majority of students have started attending physical lectures after the varsity reopened after a two-year hiatus enforced by Covid .
The colleges also regularly provide counseling to students dealing with psychological issues to help them adapt to the new environment.
Delhi University reopened last Thursday and students are showing up in large numbers. The universities of applied sciences expect even more students in the coming days.
However, the return of a large number of students poses problems in adhering to the Covid protocols. In addition, instances of physiological problems have risen among college students, according to college directors.
With this, the universities of applied sciences make an effort to ensure that students receive high-quality education and that their health is not endangered.
“We are trying to follow all Covid protocols. With large numbers of students coming, it is difficult to maintain social distancing. There is also a problem of overcrowding. Social distancing is impossible, but we have strict adherence to mask wearing and other protocols,” Hindu College Principal Anju Shrivastava told PTI.
As the colleges open after a two-year hiatus, Shrivastava believes it will take time for things to settle down.
“Students are still arriving. It will take time to fully open up and we are working on that. We hope to settle in soon. We have to prioritize everything – from classes to the cafeteria to the hostel. All things must be taken into account,” she noted.
Meanwhile, Ramjas College director Manoj Khanna noted that the level of anxiety among students is very high.
“Suddenly psychological problems have risen among students. The anxiety level in college students is very high among college students. We refer them to advisers’, he says.
He claimed that it is quite difficult to maintain social distancing on campus.
“Our infrastructures are not designed to accommodate all students, so we take classes in batches. We cannot place students in isolation. Although we try to maintain social distancing in class, students meet outside and it is very difficult to force them to maintain social distancing,” he added.
The colleges have said that they make sure that the students receive proper guidance.
The director of Guru Tegh Bahadur Khalsa College, Jaswinder Singh, said: “We have trained advisers. We offer guidance to students. The counselor comes twice a week. But if there are urgent cases, we pass on the telephone number of the supervisor to the students.”
To avoid overcrowding, some teachers also take classes in open ground. “We have given the freedom to sit outside to hold classes in the open air. Several teachers are taking open classes,” said the head of the Hindu school.
Bijayalaxmi Nanda, director of Miranda House, said the priority is to provide students with a full college experience, keeping in mind that their health will not be compromised.
“We suggest that the college has open ground as transmission is less when they are out in the open. We make sure they go outside and into the classroom when we ask them to open doors and windows. We see to it that they wear masks,” she said.
The school principal also announced that the college is launching a new welfare scheme for this year to provide financial assistance to students experiencing financial difficulties.
“We are also in the business of providing study support to students, such as providing living expenses. Next week we will make a list of students who needed social support and will provide it to them as the cost of living in the city may have increased,” she said.
“Besides the fair, this is the new thing we’re starting with, which won’t be available until this year. On this basis, financial aid will be given to students in need. Depending on the need, an amount will be provided to the students as welfare support during this period,” she added.