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Parents fume over Mumbai school's insistence on school shoes, socks

While the management at Rajhans Vidyalaya insists that children show up in the usual school shoes and socks, guardians say that staying in wet footwear all day is making them fall sick

While puddles and children go hand in hand, parents of an Andheri-based school are having to deal with the flipside of this attraction: rain soaked, soggy socks and shoes.

Parents say that school shoes take forever to dry, and changing into new socks every time their children venture outside the school building is not feasible. Pic/Nimesh Dave
Parents say that school shoes take forever to dry, and changing into new socks every time their children venture outside the school building is not feasible. Pic/Nimesh Dave

With the management of Rajhans Vidyalaya in Andheri (West) enforcing uniform regulations and refusing to make exceptions for footwear in monsoons, parents allege that their kids have been falling sick, after spending the entire day in their wet school shoes and socks.

“We understand that it is a rule and I don’t mind sending my children to school in socks and school shoes. But it has been pouring in the past week. I sent my son to school in shoes that are suitable for the rains last week, and received a note from the class teacher saying that socks and shoes are compulsory.

What sort of a rule is this?” asked an angry parent. Many parents have come together to ask the school management to ease the strict uniform code at least during rains, but there has been no change yet.

After much discussion, authorities told parents that they could send an extra pair of socks with their children, which they can change into at school, if their socks get wet. But parents weren’t happy with this decision either.

“Our kids go to the school mess twice in a school day, which is just outside the school building. How many pairs of socks am I supposed to send with my child every day?” asked another parent, who refused to be quoted.

Over the past few days, parents have also been calling up the school authorities to complain that their children have been falling ill because they spend the entire school day in their wet socks and school shoes.

“The weather itself isn’t so good for kids right now, and to make things worse, if the school insists on keeping the child in wet footwear, it’ll only affect their health further.

We were told to get medical certificates in case of such matters,” said a mother, and added that this is not the first time that parents have argued with the management over the latter’s insistence on school shoes and socks during rains.

“Students at Hansraj Morarji Public School, that runs in the same campus, are allowed to wear rain-appropriate shoes like floaters. Then why is this school insisting on different rules?” asked the angry parent.

The other side
When mid-day spoke to the school’s principal Deepshikha Srivastava, she said that the school had always enforced the rule. “Floaters look shabby on children, and it also affects their walk. We know that some shoes don’t dry easily, so we have asked parents to send children in all season school shoes and socks, along with an extra pair of socks.

If the socks get wet, children can change the same in school. And the all-season shoes dry very easily,” she said. Srivastava added that while parents have not yet been informed, the school supervisor will be informed to not insist on any particular kind of shoes during rains any more.

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