A group of 140 parents in the national capital has written to Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal seeking his intervention for reopening of schools that were closed due to deteriorating air quality. In the letter, the parents have said that schools were already closed for a longer period due to COVID-19 and while construction and other activities have been allowed keeping in mind weather-related changes that have resulted in minor improvements in AQI, “children and their education be given equal attention, in fact greater, priority”.
India has the distinction of implementing one of the world’s longest school closures. After 20 months of closure, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority authorised the reopening of schools for all classes in Delhi at 50 per cent capacity, effective November 1. This coincided with the annual pollution cycle.
“Unfortunately, our children’s education was the first victim of the pollution response and school closures were announced on November 13 for one week. This has now been extended until further orders. While recognising the enormity of the pollution crisis and the risk it poses to our children’s health, we strongly urge the Delhi government to reconsider this decision and reopen schools,” the letter said.