In response to concerns regarding young children’s sleep deprivation due to early morning classes, all private and government schools in Maharashtra must adjust their timings for pre-primary and primary sections. This change, effective from the 2024-25 academic year, impacts students from lower KG to Class 4.
Government Initiative and Study Findings
Governor Ramesh Bais highlighted the issue of sleep deprivation among young students attending early morning classes, prompting the state government to take action. Education minister Deepak Kesarkar initiated a study through the State Council for Educational Research and Training (SCERT) to explore suitable timing adjustments. Feedback from education experts, administrators, and parents was solicited before the decision was made.
Mandate and Challenges
A Government Resolution (GR) mandates the timing change while ensuring it doesn’t disrupt teaching hours as per the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009. However, this directive has sparked concerns among school managements and parents regarding logistical challenges and the impact on daily schedules.
Logistical Concerns and Parental Anxiety
Schools now face the task of reworking bus schedules and potentially introducing a second shift for secondary and senior school students. Parents, especially working ones, are anxious about accommodating the new timings into their daily routines.
Entry Age for Nursery
Some stakeholders advocate for revising the entry age for nursery from 2.5 to three years, citing health concerns. They await government action on this front.