Mumbai: Heavy downpour and waterlogged roads made schools in the city cancel classes and send students back home early. The school bus owners association (SBOA) too refused to ply buses in the afternoon.
Schools near Hindmata in Parel that run classes in two sessions — morning and afternoon — cancelled the former and alerted parents sending their kids for latter as the neighbourhood roads were experiencing waterlogging. “There is heavy waterlogging in the school premises, so we sent the children home early. We are asking parents in the afternoon session to send children at their own risk,” said a staff member of Social Service League School, Parel.
In such cases, the schools can declare a holiday if it is inconvenient for students to reach school. “The education department has given powers to the teachers to take a call during such situations. The lost teaching hours are adjusted later on,” said Anil Bornare, a teacher with Swami Muktananda School, Chembur.
The schools that decided to call off classes for the afternoon batch include Balmohan Vidaymandir in Dadar (for both Marathi and English medium), Podar International School, Santacruz and HVB Global Academy at Marine Lines.
Since traffic jams were being reported in areas like Kandivli, Andheri and others, the SBOA declared a holiday for the afternoon session of schools, which use their services. “Only children in the morning were dropped home at their convenient stops wherever possible,” said Anil Garg, president of the association.
The pupils’ parents were informed that since road and rail traffic flow were hit due to heavy rainfall, attendance on Friday was not compulsory and they could take their children home if they wish to. “The school has left it to us. They were holding classes, but we were informed that attendance was not compulsory,” said a parent from IES Modern English School, Dadar.
Meanwhile, some schools faced dearth of buses to send children home. “We faced a practical problem. There were not many buses available to take the children home, so we continued with the regular school schedule,” said Father Francis Swamy, principal, St Mary’s (ICSE) Mazgaon.