GUIDELINES ON REDUCING WEIGHT OF SCHOOL BAGS
In this competitive world, where students are giving their best, an unnoticed threat rides on our back. Heavy School Bags are a serious yet unresolved threat to the health and wellbeing of the young ones.
The medium of their knowledge, the heavy books are becoming the cause of this problem. The problem does not lie within the books, but the unplanned and unaware handling of these study materials.
In this modern age, where infrastructures are blooming, carrying heavy bags on their backs is not convenient for students. Children have to climb steps with Heavy School Bags in the schools which are functioning in multistoried buildings.
This further aggravates the problem and health consequences of the young minds.
Health issues due to these heavy loads:
• Adverse physical effect on growing children.
• Damage to their vertebral column and knees.
• It can also cause anxiety in them.
• Pain in the back and legs while climbing over steps.
• Spinal stress and discomfort.
Long term effects and effect on brain performance:
• Imbalances in the postural alignment.
• Imbalanced alignment of the spine negatively affects the communication between the brain and the body.
• Impulses created by spinal movement are received by our brain.
• Misaligned spine causes a deficiency of essential impulses received by the brain.
• Resulting in lowered brain and body performance.
Guidelines formed by the HRD Ministry:
The HRD Ministry had formed the guidelines in 2016. So as to ensure that students do not get bogged down by the weight of their own study materials. The guidelines were meant to ensure that the student may not face any burden of carrying Heavy Bags to schools.
“We have sent a fresh directive to schools to ensure strict implementation of guidelines. Heavy Schools Bags are a serious threat to the health and well-being of school students.”- A Senior Official of the Directorate of Education (DoE)
The guidelines were framed keeping in mind the factors which increase the load of school bags. Textbooks, guides, homework and classwork notebooks, rough work notebooks, water bottles, lunch box and sometimes heavy school bags also increases the load.
As per the guidelines schools are required to follow the textbooks prescribed by the SCERT, NCERT, and CBSE.
“The number of textbooks in different classes should not exceed the number prescribed by the above said statutory bodies.
The principal and teachers should frame a well designed time table for each class so that children do not have to carry too many books or notebooks to the school each day,” the guidelines said.“Schools should not prescribe additional or supplementary books that are costly and designed in a pedagogically unsound manner,” they added.
The following measures should be taken by Primary, Upper Primary, and High Schools and also advise the students and parents accordingly and also supervise the implementation of the following measures in order to reduce the load of the school bags.
• The bag should be sturdy and appropriately sized.
• Bags should be with broad padded shoulder straps.
• Using both shoulder straps for carrying the bag.
• Don’t overload the bag. A planned timetable should be given in advance of each day.
• The distribution of weight in bags should be proper. All the heavy items should be at base and close to the spine.
• Students should repack their bags on a regular basis according to the time table.
• Avoid carrying unnecessary items which will increase the load.
• Avoiding prolonged carrying of bags.
Posture is a bigger concern than most think. With the growing workload for school children, the weight of this issue is increasing day by day. Children are slow to realize this issue without showing any symptoms or experiencing pain straightaway.
This lack of knowledge in the long term is developing imbalances in the body which can affect the health of the nervous system.
Awareness and knowledge about this concern must be directed to all the students for their better health and well being.