The Maharashtra government is mulling over introducing lessons on safe driving and road norms in the state board curriculum, said education minister Vinod Tawde.
The government is following the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), which also plans to include road safety lessons in its curriculum from the next academic year. The CBSE has proposed chapters on road norms, traffic signs, highway codes, traffic hazards and related topics in the syllabus of subjects such as English, Hindi and Science.
Tawde said similar lessons can be introduced in the state board syllabus as well. “The number of road accidents is rising and so, every household needs to be made aware of road safety,” he said. “We are looking into the possibilities of introducing road safety lessons in our school curriculum as well.”
Five years ago, Najma Kazi, principal, Anjuman-I-Islam’s Saif Tyabji Girls School, Byculla, and Raj Alonee, principal, Ram Sheth Thakur Public School, Kharghar, had submitted a proposal to the state government asking it to make road safety a compulsory subject in schools. But the proposal is still gathering dust at the education department.
“Road safety is an optional subject, but most schools don’t offer it. We suggested making the subject compulsory or adding chapters on the topic in every subject,” said Kazi.
Kazi, who is also on the Road Safety Patrol (RSP) advisory committee, said she comes across alarming statistics on road accidents involving youngsters. “Many start driving two-wheelers even before they turn 18 and get a licence. It is important for them to learn about road safety,” she said.