The Madras High Court has ordered the State government to form a committee headed by the School Education Secretary to ensure that all schools in the State give physical education the same priority as academics. This is in response to the fact that 367 out of 1,434 schools in Chennai city lack playgrounds.
The committee must be organized within a month, according to Chief Justice Munishwar Nath Bhandari and Justice N. Mala, and it must first identify the schools that lack the necessary infrastructure to teach physical education. Following that, measures must be done to guarantee that the institutions are well equipped to guarantee the wellbeing of students.
The decisions were made in relation to a public interest lawsuit petition that Chennai-based independent journalist P.R. Subas Chandran filed in 2018. The judges stated that the petitioner should be a part of the committee and that his knowledge of the subject might be used because he seemed interested in the physical and mental well-being of youngsters.
The Bench issued a deadline, stating that the committee must submit its first report within three months after being established and that there must be follow-up actions as well. The court mandated recurrent school inspections to guarantee that physical education received the same weight as other courses.
Aside from providing facilities for Kabbadi, Kho Kho, volleyball, basketball, and other sports, the affiliation bylaws of the Central Board of School Education mandate that every school have a playground for hosting 200-meter track events. The Tamil Nadu Private Schools (Regulation) Act of 2018 does the same, citing a playground's suitability as a requirement for recognition.
The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act of 2009 further highlighted the value of sports facilities and physical activity opportunities. However, the judges noted that the Chief Educational Officer (CEO) for Chennai had claimed that as many as 367 of the city's 1,434 schools lacked playgrounds.