Mumbai: Now, a bell to remind school kids to drink up!

Updated: Dec 13, 2019, 07:18 IST | Prajakta Kasale, Pallavi Smart | Mumbai

BMC passed motion that bell must be rung thrice every day; commissioner's nod awaited

Schoolchildren drink water during the launch of the 'water bell' programme by the Telangana government in Secunderabad. Pic/AFP
Schoolchildren drink water during the launch of the 'water bell' programme by the Telangana government in Secunderabad. Pic/AFP

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC), worried about students not drinking enough water, passed a notice of motion on Thursday that a bell should be rung in schools thrice a day, to remind them to drink water. While the concept that began in a Kerala school will have to be approved by the municipal commissioner before implementation in schools, some schools say they already have a routine for students regarding drinking water. Parents have called the BMC decision a positive move.

Shiv Sena corporator Sachin Padwal had suggested the idea which was passed in the House, on November 15. Padwal said children spend 5 to 7 hours in school and in that period, they should drink water at least thrice. "Drinking water is essential for health. But many students forget to do so, or avoid it as they are busy with studies and play. So I suggested that schools have a bell rung thrice a day to remind students to drink water," he said. The initiative began in Kerala schools after authorities realised that students, especially girls, do not drink enough water to avoid going to the toilet.

Some schools claimed they have a routine fixed. Kalyani Aruumugam, principal of SIES School in Sion said, "We have already instructed our teachers, especially class teachers, to remind children to drink water. In the timetable, too, we have a timing set for drinking water for students till Std V. We started this four years ago after having an annual convention on the importance of water. The BMC guideline will, however, definitely bring about a positive change in schools as even those who might not have thought of it before, will take steps for it."

Speaking on behalf of parents, the president of the Parent-Teachers Association, Arundhati Chavan said, "It is a good thought. But while the authorities are thinking about reminding students to drink water, they should also ensure that there are usable toilets in all schools, as having to pee is one of the main reasons why many skip drinking water."

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