New Delhi: With reopening of schools across Karnataka delayed further due to rising coronavirus cases, the state government has decided not to permit opening of new schools in this academic year, an official said on Wednesday.Also Read - US President Biden, Japanese PM Kishida Discuss China, Nuke Weapons During First Formal Talks

“Though we have received about 1,800 applications for permission to open new schools in the state before the COVID-19 outbreak in mid-March, the state government has decided not to allow them in this academic year (2020-21), as the situation is fluid in the wake of the continuing pandemic,” an official of the state department of public instruction told IANS here. Also Read - Revised Covid-19 Guidelines By Health Ministry Recommends No Masks For Children Below 5 Years, All Details Inside; Watch Video

Even before the state-run and private schools closed for summer vacation in April, nationwide lockdown since March 25 and its extension to contain the virus spread has prevented them for re-opening after the summer vacation, as positive cases continue to surge in all the 30 districts, especially in Bengaluru. Also Read - Bengaluru Schools Reopening: Karnataka Govt to Take Call on January 29, Says Education Minister

“As two months of this academic year have gone under lockdown, with no signs of the schools re-opening till normalcy is restored, the applications have not been considered for new schools this year,” reiterated the official.

All primary, middle and high schools which could not conduct annual exams for their students of classes 1-9, were advised to promote them to the next class on the basis of their performance and internal assessment during the 2019-20 academic year.h

The state secondary leaving certificate (SSLC) and the pre-university course (PUC) boards, however, held the public exams for class 10 and second year PUC students in June in compliance with the lockdown guidelines.

“The department will take up the applications for opening new schools early next year as we hope the pandemic subsides by then to return to normalcy,” the official added.