Mumbai, Mar 28 (PTI) A circular issued by an education body of the Maharashtra government to keep all schools in the state open till April 30 for Classes 1 to 9 will be withdrawn, minister Vinod Tawde said today.

The circular was issued by the Maharashtra State Council of Educational Research and Training (MSCERT) on the directives of the Centre, the school education minister said in the Legislative Council.

“The circular should have been issued before the start of the academic year rather than at the end of the year.

However, it will be withdrawn now. The summer vacations for schools will continue (as per earlier schedule),” he said.

Depending upon the need, the government shall consider implementing it from the next academic year starting in June, he said.

Tawde this after Kapil Patil (JD-U) raised the issue in the Upper House and argued that it was unjust for schools to be open till April 30 for students who are exhausted after their annual exams.

Moreover, the teachers, too, have to assess the answer sheets, he said.

Replying to the debate over issues for improving the quality of education, Tawde expressed displeasure over Patil bypassing him and approaching Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis for even “small” issues.

The minister also said that a false campaign was launched on social media platforms like Facebook and WhatsApp over assimilation of surplus teachers in schools from those having low enrolment of students.

“Jokes making fun of the government’s decision were posted by some people (on social media),” he said.

“The government took the decision to assimilate surplus teachers to other nearby schools following directives of the Union Human Resources Development (HRD) ministry, stating that if there are less than 10 students in a classroom in a school they should be assimilated in nearby schools,” he said.

A false campaign was launched that the government was closing down schools run by it, he said.

On the directive asking teachers to take selfies with children who were not going to school and posting them online, he said the decision was taken to ensure that children of migrant labourers were not deprived of education.

“If their (children’s) parents migrate for work elsewhere, then the education officer of that area can be alerted and the child can be brought to a school there to continue with his/her education. However, this decision of the government was also mocked (on social media),” Tawde said.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.