The heat wave in some past weeks compels the state governments to re visit the policy of the vacations and due to the health concern especially for the students till class 5, many state governments ordered to close the school in the second week of April to counter the situation.
Students are enjoying the holiday much before the designated time and got the cover against the heat wave. However, there is a concern in some sections of education especially the teachers, about the effect of these prolonged holidays on the syllabus and study of the children. The schools are closed in west Bengal state (including state run and aided schools) from April 11, when the mercury hit the figure of 45 degree Celsius.
In west Bengal, the department of schools has decided to open the schools on May 16 but hey will again be closed on May 19 as the official vacation period will start then. The Bengal board of secondary education has given the direction to schools to cancel the summer evaluation.
A students of class 10 from an aided schools said that these holidays have become the common trend in the state and the classes are becoming rare. The student said that we have to sit in the exams just after the opening that will create a lot of pressure on us. According to a teacher from a government aided schools in Howrah district, students of the rural area in Bengal will be affected most in this whole process of vacations.
There are two issues raised after this situation; one is the shortage of time due to vacation as the syllabus can’t be covered in short span of time after the vacations) and second is the availability and affordability of the private tutors. The teacher told the media that due to this situation, the rural students who depend on the school curriculum will have to face the trouble.
The students from the less privileged families have been further unconvinced as they are not getting their mid day meal which was the prime reason for their attendance in schools. The teacher further said that from the parents point of view, this situation might cause negative impact and the parents can opt for other educational boards to avoid the vacation culture of this board.
A teacher of the chemistry from a state run schools said that class 9 and 10 would suffer the most. The timing of the class that have to be used for the teaching, has been short now and as a counter strategy we will have to take the short cuts that would eventually result in the weak basic knowledge.
On the situation, the headmistress of the Duff schools for girls said that schools are closed to project the children from the severe heat wave and extra classes will be arranged if we consider necessary. The education minister Pratha Chatterjee’s statement caused the anger in circles, the minister said that these holidays will not impact the students as they can study at home always.