Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami launched the ‘School Hygiene Education Program’ across schools in Uttarakhand in Dehradun on Tuesday.
The programme aims to reach 5 million children in 13 districts of Uttarakhand.
Speaking on the occasion, CM Dhami, said, “Hygiene and sanitation are the foundations of progress. Good health and good hygiene practises are linked together.” “With this excellent initiative, we could see a difference in the behaviour of children and the community towards hygiene in Uttarakhand,” he added.
The programme focuses on sensitising children about six critical occasions for handwashing, which include washing hands after defecation, and the use of toilets; before eating; before preparing and serving food; before feeding infants and children; after cleaning a child’s bottom, and after coughing and sneezing during illness.
The programme in Udham Singh Nagar district has already made significant marks by renovating infrastructure in the community health centre in Kiccha and various schools. It also instilled a hygiene culture in children through hygiene sessions conducted by teachers.
Bansidhar Tiwari, director general, school education, Uttarakhand said, “The programme is a great effort in introducing good hygiene and sanitation practises amongst school children and the community of Uttarakhand.” “It has made children change agents and brought significant changes in the health status of the community,” Tiwari added.
Selected teachers have been trained in the curriculum by experts in hygiene. Efforts are also being made by ensuring the right messages are delivered through wall paintings, hygiene corners and a strong curriculum, said the officials.
The CM further added that Uttarakhand is the first state in the country to implement the National Education Policy-2020. “For the implementation of the National Education Policy, Bal Vatikas have been started in 4457 co-located Anganwadi centres in the state. New programs like ‘Praveshotsav’, ‘Aarohi’, ‘Kaushalam’, ‘Anandam’, ‘Vidya Setu’ are being conducted,” the CM said.
To promote online education, virtual classrooms have been established in central studios and 500 schools in all 13 districts of the state.
In higher education, subjects like Vedic Science, Vedic Mathematics and Management Introduction to Bhagavad Gita have been implemented as co-curricular to acquaint the students with Indian culture and the Indian knowledge system.
The ‘Start-up Policy’ has been implemented to promote research and start-ups in higher educational institutions.