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Delhi Primary Schools Shifts to Online Learning as Air Quality Worsens

by Sana Gori
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Air pollution

Government and Private Schools Shift to Virtual Classes in Response to Air Pollution Concerns!

Amid worsening air quality in Delhi, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has made the decision to temporarily close all government and private primary schools in the city. This closure, effective for the next two days, aims to safeguard the health of students and staff. During this time, schools will conduct online classes, ensuring that education continues despite the challenging environmental conditions.

The shift to online learning is a necessary measure to ensure the safety and health of students, the concern for air quality has prompted the state government in the National Capital Region (NCR) to contemplate suspending in-person classes for students up to class V. The shift to online instruction for these young learners is part of a broader strategy to address the persistent air pollution issues that have plagued the region.

The Commission for Air Quality Management (CAQM) has outlined a Graded Response Action Plan (GRAP) for the NCR, which consists of four distinct stages based on the severity of air quality in Delhi. These stages are categorized as follows: Stage I ‘Poor’ (AQI 201-300), Stage II ‘Very poor’ (AQI 301-400), Stage III ‘Severe’ (AQI 401-450), and Stage IV ‘Severe +’ (AQI>450). The GRAP serves as an emergency response mechanism to tackle the escalating air pollution levels in the region.

Of significant concern is the fact that Delhi’s air quality has remained in the ‘very poor’ category for five consecutive days, with a recorded Air Quality Index (AQI) of 346, In accordance with the data provided by the System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR)-India, the city of Delhi has experienced consistent ‘very poor’ air quality for an ongoing period of five days, registering an Air Quality Index (AQI) of 346. This prolonged period of compromised air quality underscores the urgency of addressing air pollution and its far-reaching implications for public health.

Gopal Rai, the Environment Minister of Delhi, has stressed the importance of coordinated efforts between the Central and state governments in combating pollution and improving air quality. He has specifically highlighted the next 15 days as a critical period, as experts believe that swift and collective action is essential to address this pressing issue effectively. Collaboration between authorities at various levels is crucial to implementing strategies and policies that will mitigate the adverse effects of air pollution on the well-being of the people of Delhi.

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