Delhi govt advises private schools to adopt happiness curriculum
The Delhi government’s Directorate of Education (DoE) has advised all private schools in the national capital to adopt the happiness curriculum to release the anxiety, stress and depression that children may be suffering owing to the situation wrought by the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a circular issued to all private schools on Wednesday, the DoE said a writ petition was filed before the Delhi high court last year, seeking directions to the Union government to provide online “mindfulness classes” combining meditation, yoga and relaxation techniques for the benefit of all government and private schools students .
The DoE circular said, “The honourable court disposed of the petition with a direction to the Union ministry of education to take a decision, treating this petition as a representation. In pursuance of the same, the ministry constituted a committee, which recommended that for students’ holistic well-being, mini-modules on breathing exercises, mindfulness, meditation, and simple yogasanas may be developed and shared with schools to intersperse with the other lessons during online classes.”
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi had introduced the happiness curriculum in government schools in July 2018. Under the curriculum, nursery and kindergarten students twice a week and students from classes 1 to 8 spend once daily in meditation, storytelling, and activity sessions, followed by question-and-answer sessions.
Currently, all schools are shut in the national capital in view of the pandemic and classes are being held online or in semi-online mode.
The education directorate said since mindfulness is an integral part of the happiness curriculum, which is already being taught in government schools, private schools should also adopt the curriculum.
The directorate has also provided links to the curriculum handbooks, containing sections on mindfulness, and also extended help to train teachers if required.
Private schools have welcomed the recommendation.
Jyoti Arora, principal of Mount Abu Public School in Rohini, said, “While we already have a happiness club in our school since 2016, introducing the Delhi government’s happiness curriculum is a welcome step as it will be beneficial to the overall well-being of students.”