Cold wave: NCPCR writes to states on observing precautions in opening schools

The child rights body also said they would like to review the school calendar and timetable in states witnessing the cold weather conditions.
The severe cold weather conditions are likely to abate in Punjab and Haryana from Tuesday. (File Photo)
The severe cold weather conditions are likely to abate in Punjab and Haryana from Tuesday. (File Photo)

NEW DELHI: As cold waves and fog grip north India, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) on Monday wrote to states that no child should suffer in schools or during their commute because of the extreme weather conditions.

The child rights body also said they would like to review the school calendar and timetable in states witnessing the cold weather conditions.

In his letter to the state education department, NCPCR chief Priyank Kanoongo, said, “NCPCR, under section l3 (l) (a) and (k) recommends to review school calendars and timetable and accordingly take appropriate decision keeping in view the weather conditions in the respective state/UTs as exposure to cold weather may cause severe health implications for children.”

The state/UT governments should also ensure that no child should suffer in schools or during their commute to and fro from school due to decisions of the authorities and school management during extreme weather.

“In the last few days, it has been observed by the Commission that severe cold weather conditions are becoming a cause of concern for children in schools, especially in states where cold weather reaches a level that may not be suitable for children,” he said. 

“Children, being at a tender age, need proper care while in school and during travel.”

He said the safety and security of children in schools is one of the core areas in which the Commission has been taking active steps. 

Due to the cold wave, many north Indian states, including Punjab, Uttarakhand, and Himachal Pradesh, have extended winter vacations for school-going children. In Delhi, the state government has announced closing schools till January 12 for students from nursery to Class 5. Many schools in the national capital are taking online classes for children as the government announced school closure due to the prevailing cold conditions.

According to the India Meteorological Department’s forecast, intense cold wave conditions will continue in several states across North India over the next few days.

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