Two weeks after students were made to stay late in schools to watch PM Narendra Modi’s speech on Teachers’ Day, they are being asked to come to school early on Wednesday to watch another event live — Mangal-yaan’s entry into the Mars orbit.
Doordarshan’s live telecast of the historic event starts at 6.45am. If the mission succeeds, India will be the only country to send a probe to Mars in its first attempt.
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has issued a circular to all affiliated schools asking them to make all “necessary arrangements for students to view the programme collectively”.
“It is a proud and rare event that has utmost importance… the programme will provide important scientific knowledge to students, whet their curiosity and enable them to cherish this rare scientific event,” a CBSE circular said.
Justifying its instructions, the CBSE said it will inculcate scientific temper in the children.
Though the intentions are noble, ground realities may make it tough for schools to follow through.
“The senior students have their exams right now so they won’t be able to participate in the screening but we have made arrangements for the junior students and will screen the programme through our smart class system,” said LV Sehgal, principal of Bal Bharti School on Pusa Road.
“We have made arrangements to record the telecast and show it to children a little later as changing the bus schedules is very difficult. We have a very active astronomy club and we will hold a talk and a workshop for children after the screening,” said Ameeta Wattal, principal of Springdales School.
The HRD ministry had sent a circular to all states to ensure that students were in schools to catch PM Modi’s speech on September 5. Though the ministry circular had maintained it was not mandatory it did seek feedback on attendance. Over 90 million children across 850,000 schools had watched the PM’s speech live.