The Odisha government on Friday announced resumption of physical classes for students of 8th and 11th standards from October 21 as the state is witnessing a declining trend in COVID-19 cases. Classroom teaching for students of classes 9 and 12 has already been resumed in the state with strict adherence to health safety guidelines. “The COVID situation has been improving in the state. We will resume classroom teaching for students of classes 8 and 11 from October 21. A notification will be issued soon,” School and Mass Education Minister S R Dash said. No decision has been taken for reopening of schools for students from class 1 to class 7, he said. Schools remained closed from October 9 on the occasion of Durga Puja and Kumar Purnima and will reopen on October 21. Odisha on Thursday logged 521 new COVID-19 cases, 94 less than the previous day, taking the state’s caseload to 10,33,809, while six fresh fatalities pushed the coronavirus death toll to 8,274.