From monitoring school bags of children to ensure they do not carry heavy load to teaching them correct lifting and carrying techniques are among the guidelines issued by Delhi Government to heads of schools.
The Directorate of Education (DoE) has sent seven-point guidelines to principals of government and private schools in the national capital for reducing the weight of school bags for children.
“It has been observed that school children are carrying very heavy bags to school which is affecting their health adversely. These small children need to be necessarily spared from such burden. All heads are instructed to ensure that the school bags of the children are not heavy and should monitor it on regular basis,” the DoE communication said.
According to the guidelines, the school principals and teachers should frame a well designed time-table for each section of the class so that children do not have to carry too many books or note-books to the school each day and also ensure that the co-curricular activity periods should be held along with the other periods on daily basis thereby having an equitable distribution of weight of school bags.
“The students should be discouraged from bringing reference books and other books to school especially in senior classes. Parents should remind and guide their children to pack the school bag daily accordingly to the time table and bring only the prescribed books and discourage their ward from carrying unnecessary items to the school,” the letter said.
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“Staggered home work schedule should be planned. Sensitization of teachers and parents should be done to create awareness of the potential problem of heavy school bags and to make them aware of the health issues which can arise due to heavy weight of school bags,” it added.
DoE has also recommended that the schools should teach correct lifting and carrying techniques as part of their health education programmes and encourage pupils to take responsibility to health and back care.
“Parents should be requested to buy a child friendly bag which is comfortable to use light in weight,” the department said.
The CBSE had also asked schools in April this year to consider ways to reduce the burden of heavy bags carried by students.