School bells to ring in early?

Bangalore traffic cops and school authorities debate over revising school timings in order to avoid rush-hour traffic.

Published: 28th January 2012 01:30 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th May 2012 06:23 PM   |  A+A-

1-SCHOOL-M

BANGALORE: Representatives from various private schools across the city failed to arrive at a consensus over the issue of the proposed change in school timings, from 8.30 am to 3.30 pm, at an interactive meeting held on Friday between stakeholders from the education and traffic departments.

The meet was arranged in the wake of increasing traffic in the city. While officials from the education and traffic department batted for implementation of the circular which is pending since 2008, some private school honchos argued that change in school timings will only put children into trouble.

Speaking at the event, Tushar Girinath, commissioner for Public Instructions said, “It is feasible if schools start functioning from 8.30 am, as students can grasp well. Children can reach schools without being caught in traffic snarls and they can even reach home early.”

A section of representatives argued that this initiative will only help schools situated in the heart of the city, but not those on outskirts or rural areas.

Working parents will lose control over their children if timings are changed. But others gave their consent and said children can spend more time on education and extra-curricular activities.

“Biological clock of children will be reset. This change of time will affect the children both physically and mentally. This measure was taken back some years ago as it was disadvantageous,” opined Shiva Kumar of Blossom School. Dr M A Saleem, Additional Commissioner of Police (Traffic & Security), said that his department had identified the schools which were contributing to traffic woes. “There is a need to segregate the school timing from the office. If the schools start at 8.30 am, about 15-25 per cent of the traffic will reduce,” he said.

Pointing out that government schools hardly create any traffic, Saleem said, “In many schools, we have seen cars lined on road to drop and pick-up the children. Car pooling or public transport can be encouraged.”

The suggestions tabled in the meeting will be taken into account for the formulation of the policies.

Keeping traffic in mind, those interested can also drop in their suggestions either to the Commissioner of Public Instruction or to Bangalore Traffic Police.

Tushar Girinath said that a policy will be drafted based on the suggestions. The policy will be put on open discussion for public to express their views on the suggestions before being implemented and enforcing.

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