The Tamil Nadu government on Thursday reversed its decision to open schools for classes 9-12 from November 16, reported PTI. The date of reopening will be announced later based on the coronavirus situation, it said.

The government said that colleges and universities – also scheduled to open from November 16 – would now resume from December 2 only for research scholars and final year postgraduate students of technology and science streams.

“The opening of colleges for all other courses will be announced later,” the Edappadi K Palaniswami government said in an official release. It added that hostels would open only for those students who will resume studies from next month.

The opinion of parents to reopen schools was divided, the release said, while explaining the reason behind its decision. The government had on Monday held state-wide consultations with parents of students in government, private and aided schools.

The Tamil Nadu government had on October 31 allowed schools and colleges to reopen for students of Class 9 and above from November 16 with safety guidelines related to the coronavirus. Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam chief MK Stalin had hit out at the government for the “hasty announcement”. Stalin had said that a decision on reopening schools should be taken in January 2021 after analysing the pandemic situation in the state.

Tamil Nadu has so far reported 7,50,409 Covid-19 cases and the toll stood at 11,415, according to Union health ministry data. There are 18,655 active cases and 7,20,339 recoveries in the state.