MoE to relocate students in P/ling to Punakha next month

For students of other dzongkhags like Samtse, Samdrup Jongkhar, and Gelephu, the ministry is not able to relocate them for now

The education ministry is planning to relocate the students from classes IX to XII in Phuentsholing to Punakha by August, according to Education Minister Jai Bir Rai. 

The minister, during the press meeting on Friday, said that preparation has also been done on the possibility of relocating students in Phuentsholing to other dzongkhags since schools in the town have been closed due to the lockdown.

To help students to continue the lessons, the ministry has decided to relocate the students of classes IX to XII in Phuentsholing to Punakha,” he said.

However, the ministry has also offered options to parents and students with 1,090 seats in 190 various schools in the country.

“Most parents and students take our offers and hundreds of students are in the process,” Lyonpo said, adding that it is their choice, whether to be in boarding schools or as dayscholars. 

Lyonpo added that from classes PP to VIII, the ministry has decided on “blended learning,” which is a mix of online and contact teaching. It is one of the components of the NNC. 

“After the mid-term examination, the ministry has decided to teach them face-face contact teaching for the classes PP to VIII,” Lyonpo said. 

According to the education ministry, there are more than 32,000 students in southern areas, and the ministry will not be able to relocate all the students to other schools. 

“It is very difficult for the ministry to relocate the students but the ministry is segregating students of three zones of Phuentsholing and relocating them in different schools,” he said. 

He explained that preparation has been done for the quarantine facilities for the students and it is mandatory to quarantine them for two weeks. 

In addition, the ministry has also studied how many of the students want to continue online classes and how many want to be relocated. Some opted for online classes, but the ministry has decided to relocate the students. 

Other options like if the students have family members staying in other dzongkhags, they can choose to stay with them as a day-scholar. 

“We have enquired with parents and some also are in the process to keep their children,” Lyonpo said. 

Meanwhile, for students of other dzongkhags like Samtse, Samdrup Jongkhar, and Gelephu, the minister said that the ministry is not able to relocate them for now.  

“We’ll see how the situation unfolds in the future given that the southern places are seeing an increasing number of positive cases.” 

Lyonpo added that there are around 61 to 62 schools and around 32,000 students and it is very difficult to relocate, but looking at the situation they will relocate them accordingly. 

“In the current situation, the ministry is working on plans to first relocate students of Classes VII to XII students of Phuentsholing,” the minister said.

Kinley Yonten from Thimphu