Authorities mull options to recover academic loss
Students and faculty members of Dhaka University thronged the campus on Sunday with much enthusiasm and in festive mood as academic activities resumed after a closure of one year and a half due to Covid-19 pandemic.
They attended classes and examinations maintaining health guideline and social distancing.
On October 5, the university authorities reopened the residential halls for the fourth-year (honours) and master’s students while others were allowed to stay from October 10. All the students had to receive at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine, according to a decision of the DU Syndicate.
The decision of resuming classes came at the meeting of the Academic Council on October 7.
Atikur Rahman, a student of the Department of Philosophy who attended classes, said it was pleasure meeting classmates, friends and teachers after so many days.
Toufiqur Rahman of history said: “I have heaved a sigh of relief after attending the in-person classes. This initiative will help the students overcome depression.”
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Lecturer of the Institute of Health Economics Md Ragaul Azim shared on Facebook two photographs of an exam hall where they were conducting the fourth-year final examination. He celebrated the moment with joy and said it was memorable.
The in-person academic activities had remained suspended since March 20 last year, following the outbreak of Covid-19 in Bangladesh.
Vice Chancellor Prof Md Akhtaruzzaman paid a visit to the classrooms of the Arts Building at around 11am.
He said: “Now we have come to realize the real happiness as the in-person academic activities have resumed. All the students attending the classes are vaccinated and we found 100% attendance while I paid a visit to English, History and Islamic History and Culture departments.”
The VC hoped that the university would become a role model of maintaining Covid-19 health guideline. “The health protocols will be maintained properly.”
He added that they had chalked out ‘loss-recovery plans’ that include holding exams on shortened syllabus by reducing the vacations. “We are hopeful of recovering the loss in the shortest possible time.”
Earlier, Pro VC Prof ASM Maksud Kamal said that classes could be conducted on Saturdays to reduce the academic loss.
He also said that teachers would have to conduct at least 60% in-person classes and the remaining could be held virtually.
“If any department or faculty member wants to conduct 100% of the classes physically maintaining proper health protocol, it’s up to them,” he added.
DU Medical Centre chief Dr Sarwar Jahan Muktafi said that no one visited the centre with Covid symptoms on Sunday.