KARACHI: With the dropping temperature and increasing cold weather in Sindh, the All Private Schools Management Association (APSMA) has requested schools to give either a one-week holiday or half-an-hour relaxation time to students in the morning.
APSMA Sindh chairperson Syed Khalid Shah has requested school managements in Sindh to allow students to reach school up to half-an-hour late due to extreme cold weather, especially in the morning.
“The [Matriculation system] session is in its last stage and schools will be having their oral examinations by the end of February and theoretical examinations at the start of March, which is why it is difficult to grant more vacation,” said Shah, adding that the only solution is to grant ‘relaxation time’ to students in the mornings.
He also pointed out that a trend has been observed in the last three years that actual cold weather is experienced in January, not December, so the vacation schedule should also be revised.
Meanwhile Private Schools Management Association (PSMA) head Sharafuz Zaman, who is also a member of the education department’s steering committee, has written an open letter to the government of Sindh, requesting it to announce a week-long holiday due to the cold weather and poor attendance at schools.
“Due to the cold weather many students are getting ill and are not able to attend school,” he claimed, adding that the forecast shows a decrease in the temperature by the end of this week.
Zaman shared that some parents have complained that a majority of the students have to leave their homes for schools at 6:30am, as their vans come early, while parents who drop their children on motorcycles also suffer the cold.
“We will discuss the changes in vacation schedule in the upcoming steering committee meeting, which is to be held by the end of January,” said the PSMA head. He also said that due to severe climatic and environmental changes, the dates for winter and summer vacations should be revised as the chances of a heatwave in May are high.
“We will propose scheduling summer vacations from May 15 till July 15 every year and winter vacations in the first 15 days of January,” said Zaman, adding that the dates will be conditional upon the weather. School timings should also be fixed at 9am in the winter and 7:30am in the summer, he proposed.
The school management associations will meet the secretary of schools on Thursday to take up this cause.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 12th, 2017.