Mumbai: Parents of students studying in all schools of the state will be notified via a text message (SMS) if their wards do not attend classes from this academic year. Parents have welcomed this move but schools claimed that it may lead to panic among guardians.
In an attempt to beef up safety and security measures of children, the state education department has directed all schools to inform parents about the movement and behaviour of their children. As per the circular, SMSes will be sent to parents on their registered mobile numbers if their children do not attend classes. Along with this, schools need to mark attendance of each child three times a day during school hours.
Fr Francis Swamy, Joint Secretary of the Archdiocesan Board of Education (ABE), which manages over 150 schools in the city, said, “We have already implemented this measure in our school. We notify parents immediately when a particular child is missing from the class or not attending lectures. This enables parents to keep tabs. It also helps them to be aware about the conduct of their child, but sometimes this may create panic.’’
A principal of another school said, “Parents are busy with their work during school hours and this will create unnecessary stress. Sometimes children are just busy playing and are not present in the class but if parents are notified every time, it will create panic. Safety of students is the responsibility of the authorities during school hours.”
Shikha Desai, a parent, said, “It is a good initiative as we will be informed and updated about the movement of our children. In this way we will be aware if our children are not attending classes due to any reason whatsoever.” The circular added that this measure should be implemented in all schools across Maharashtra, irrespective of the board of learning.