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Suryakant Jena

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha Secondary School Teachers Association (OSSTA) on Saturday opposed the revised timings for classes of students from standard 9 to 12 which were effected by the State government on Friday.  This apart, the teachers' body has also issued an ultimatum to the State government that from March 1, its members will not attend classes on all Sundays.

The State Mass Education department has revised the class timings of Standard IX and XI students from 8.30 AM - 10.00 AM at present to 7.00 AM - 9.00 AM. Similarly, Class X and XII which are at present running from 11.00 AM to 4.00 PM has been rescheduled to 9.00 AM - 1.00 PM.

However, General Secretary of the OSSTA, Prakash Mohanty has alleged the new timings implemented to keep students safe from the possible heat wave situation will in fact create more problems for them.

At a time when the temperature in several parts of the State is inching towards 40 degree Celsius and the State Capital even notching above the barrier even though it is just the end of February, how can the government not think that students especially those of standard 10 and 12 return to their homes after finishing off their classes amid the scorching heat at 1 pm, Mohanty shot questions to the government in a press release.

There are innumerable places in Odisha where students and teachers have to walk or ride for kilometers to go and return from the schools. The new timings implemented by the government will put both the teachers and students in deep trouble as any untoward incidents cannot be ruled out especially while returning from classes during the time when the heat would be at peak.

The OSSTA has demanded that the school timings of students should be adjusted between 6.30 am and 11.30 am as used to be done during the summers in previous years.

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