Happy holidays in hot schools

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  • Published 13.06.12

First the Hatia by-election and now the unrelenting heat — it will be some time before several private schools of the state capital welcome back students after the summer break.

In a fresh deferment, the schools have decided — some on their own and some acting on pressure by parents — to further extend the vacation in a bid to spare the children the temperature torment, which was pegged at 41°C in Ranchi on Tuesday.

St Mary’s (n) School will now open on June 18 instead of June 14. “We were supposed to resume classes on June 11, but the holiday had to be extended as our school buses were taken away by the district administration for poll duty. We deferred the reopening date to June 14, but now we are further stretching the vacation for the sake of children, who might fall sick if they venture out in this oppressive heat,” said a school official, Avinash Dewan.

If St Mary’s (n) School is playing safe, CBSE-affiliated Oxford Public School is no less worried — both about the students’ health and academics. The cradle, which stuck to its original schedule and reopened on June 11, was forced to call it a day on Tuesday after the parents requested the management to resume studies only when the weather is more comfortable. It will remain shut till June 14.

“We registered cent per cent attendance yesterday (June 11). But some parents raised objection, saying that the sweltering heat might take a toll on both their and the children’s health. We will now open on June 15,” said principal C.J. Jacob.

Similarly, principal of Kairali School Rajan Verghese has decided to defer the reopening from June 13 to June 18. Gurunanak Higher Secondary School, which was supposed to open its doors to the students on June 14, will follow suit.

As principal Manohar Lal pointed out, they did not want to take risk with the children’s health. “We will try and cover the pending syllabus by taking classes on the second Saturday of every month,” Lal added.

However, DAV group of schools is yet to take a call.

“We are planning to extend the vacation, but no concrete decision has been taken yet. Our school is supposed to open on June 18. If the heat wave alert continues, we will either extend the holidays or change the timings to 6am-10am,” said L.R. Saini, regional director of DAV, Ranchi zone.

There is no such respite in store for students of government schools though. “All government schools were supposed to reopen on June 4, but we extended the summer break till June 11 in view of the oppressive heat. As of now, we don’t have any plan to further suspend classes,” said Ranchi district education officer (DEO) Maheep Kumar Singh.

Officials point out that there was no need to shut down the cradles till the mercury climbed down as classes were being held from 6am till 11am.

Singh added that Ranchi DC K.K. Soan had also sought the opinion of school principals and they were supposed to inform him about the same. “But that has not been possible because of the Hatia bypoll,” Soan said.

In Jamshedpur, the private schools will start the junior sections — Classes I to V — from June 18 while the senior sections — Class VI and beyond — are giving away early around 10.30am.