In a major relief to students of PCMC schools, the corporation announced a welcome initiative of a ‘no school bag day’ on the first and third Saturday of every month.
Students will not have to carry their school bags for those two Saturdays and instead of studying, they would enjoy the school hours by participating in different types of extra-curricular activities planned by the education department.
Pune365 spoke to teachers, parents and students of PCMC schools among others to gauge their response to this novel initiative.
Sunita, a school teacher says, “A welcome move from the governing bodies as children hardly come to schools on Saturday.
The school has several talented students, but due to their financial problems, they can’t opt for specialising coaching to sharpen their talent. “
Such initiatives not only help them get coaching, but also encourage students to participate in co-curricular activities. Compulsory participation and attendance on Saturday, also helps them in building self confidence.
She added that on the first day itself the school saw 100 per cent attendance and all the students enrolled them for different activities. Though, as of now the options are limited in these schools, they propose to introduce coaching for more sports and games.
This initiative was started in the government schools of PCMC and on 1st and 3rd Saturday- an activity day basically, says Kartika Shinde, a fifth standard student.
There were limited activities like dance, cricket and singing. Apart from these, there were no other options. It was like an official sports day monthly. Our school often has a half day on Saturday, and most of us don’t attend schools.
We would have loved if this was kept in any of the weekdays and for 6 long hours in school. Even if it is for studies, we would have loved it, she added.
Another student Rakhi Pandey, eight standard says, It should not be restricted to primary schools, our secondary syllabus is far more vast than theirs and we have several subjects too and this can help us also pursue our other interests.
Kids between the age group of 12-15 are well aware of what they want to do. With such initiatives, it would be more simple for us to choose our profession. Because as we come out of school there are hardly places where we can show our talent and get proper guidance. Not everybody can afford special coaching fees.
While a parent from a private school Radhika Waghmare, says, Private schools should also introduce such activities in school, one period in a week is not sufficient to sharpen their talent.
Our private schools need to adopt and implement such inspiring initiatives.
Although her daughter Ayanshi says, We have holidays on Saturday, but we are burdened with lots of homework to do on the weekends. Some of us have opted for dance, singing classes but that isn’t enough once in a week.
If schools introduce such initiatives, we would love to go to school even on Sunday’s.It is very rare to see a teacher compelling you to participate in curricular activities and with such options, we would be happy to attend schools even on weekends.
Vanjai Desai, Parent says, Such novel initiatives should be taken up by private schools as well. The ever-increasing weight of school bags is a matter of great concern for most parents of children in private schools too.
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