Majority of schools lack playground facilities in JK, say officials

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Students attending morning assembly. [Photo: Faceboo/ Govt Girls Higher Secondary School Baramulla]

Srinagar: With the government’s effort to consider sports as a part of curricular activity in educational institutes, ‘majority of the public schools in Jammu and Kashmir are without playground facilities.’

Top officials familiar with the issue of non-availability of playgrounds in government-run-schools told news agency Kashmir News Observer, “School Education Department was working hard in providing space to the students for extracurricular activities.”

“The department is aware about the non-availability of playgrounds in most of the government schools. We are working on the issues and I hope very soon, every public school will have their own playground and sports infrastructure too,” the official.

On asking about the figures of such schools without playground facilities, the official said that he has to check the figures.

Meanwhile, Directorate of School Education Kashmir (DSEK) Monday said that nowadays extra-curricular activities are being treated as part of the curriculum.

In a communique to Chief Education Officers (CEOs), DSEK said, “As you are aware that National Education Policy, 2020 (NEP, 2020) lays special emphasis on sports. Sports activities were once considered just an extra-curricular activity but now these are being treated as part of the curriculum and grading in sports Wil be counted in the education of the children.”

The directorate further said that by eliminating the rigid separation between curricular and extra-curricular activities, the NEP-2020 acknowledges sports to be equally important as any other subject.

“Under centrally sponsored scheme Samagra Shiksha, Sports and Physical Education component has been introduced for encouragement of Sports, Physical activities, Yoga, Co-curricular activities etc,” it reads.

DSEK said that in order to ensure the effective outcomes from sports activities and proper utilisation of sports grant, the Department of School Education and Literacy has revised guidelines regarding sports and physical education component in tune with NEP-2020 with a focus on daily sports activities, procurement of equipment, age appropriate games, Yoga, Indigenous games, infrastructure development, function of Sports committee and Physical Education Teachers etc.

The director accordingly requested the CEOs to ensure that the revised guidelines are implemented in schools under their jurisdiction to promote sports at various levels.

Pertinently, sports and physical education component has been a part of Samagra Shiksha which has provision for procurement of sports equipment.

Earlier, the Ministry of Education (MoE) had asked the Jammu and Kashmir School Education Department to tag those government institutions that lack playground facilities with the neighbouring schools having existing playgrounds.

The MoE said this in a Project Approval Board (PAB) for the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir under Samagra Shiksha Scheme for the financial year 2023-24.

“If the playground facilities are not there in the schools then the UT should tagged these schools with the neighbouring schools which have playground facilities,” MoE had said.

The ministry has also asked to report the tagged data on UDISE+ so that the Department of School Education and Literacy will attach these schools to the nearby existing playgrounds.


(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by FPK staff and is published from a syndicated feed from KNO.)

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