We Never Had Rain Holidays during Our School & College Days in 80’s & 90’s -So Why Now?

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We Never Had Rain Holidays during Our School & College Days in 80’s -So Why Now?

Meteorologists are ‘Always Wrong,’ Right? Then Why Give Holidays for Institutions? The District administration instead of declaring holidays for school children should straighten up their poor planning, rectify bad storm water drainage and roads without drainage, many other poor infrastructure planning which has led to water flowing and flooding of streets recently. Simply giving holidays to school children in order to avoid blame for flooding due to poor planning of MCC and PWD will not serve the purpose. Every now and then if children are given holidays due to bad weather, just imagine how many times more will they getday off from school, when monsoons have still time to end? Why not have “Monsoon Holidays” instead of “Summer Holidays”? Not “Smart” decision being a “Smart City”?

Mangaluru: I just happened to see the report today in Mangalorean.com “Heavy Rain Alert, DC Announces Holiday for Schools and Colleges on July 20” – and I thought to myself-REALLY? This is indeed funny to note that as soon as Weatherman forecasts rain in the coming days, the District Administration announce HOLIDAY for Schools and Colleges-which doesn’t make absolutely NO SENSE! And every time a Holiday is announced in the pretext of heavy rains, it works out to be a bright sunny day- and we have experienced during last year monsoons. So why even bother to give a holiday for school and college students? Okay, I do agree the decision is taken with respect to the safety of the students going to schools and colleges in heavy rains. But on second thought, how many of these students will remain indoor at home during rain holiday-not many? A whole lot of students will be at the Malls or movie theatres, rather than be home and safe during torrential rains.

Even we all went to school and colleges, but as far as I know, there was no such thing called a Rain Holiday, unless it was sure of a cyclone or Tsunami hitting the City. But now, as soon as it rains continuously for few hours, and as soon as meteorological dept issues a warning of heavy rains, schools and college management gets a notice regarding rain holiday. We walked in the flooded streets during monsoons when we went to school and colleges- and it was fun. If the district administration is so much worried about the safety of the students, they should have Monsoon Holidays rather than Summer Holidays. By giving a holiday at the last minute screws up all the co-curricular planned at the institution.

By the way, why even call for a holiday 24 hours in advance, when you are not sure it would be bad weather, from past experiences. Meteorologists had predicted heavy rains in the past-but all we got was few non-harmful showers. There are no flooded drains, no knee-high stranded water, no heavy thunderstorms etc-What is Monsoon without rains? So why all this fuss about announcing a holiday in the name of rains. We should very well know that No one is perfect, but no profession gets a rap for being consistently wrong like a weatherman. If they don’t predict the weather perfectly when your plans rely on it, things tend to get a bit hairy.

Many a time meteorologists say there would be sunny skies while there’s a storm raging overhead. or sometimes just the opposite-like they will say there would heavy thunderstorms, and it will turn out to be a pleasant warm day. Accurate weather forecasting depends on how many eyes there are in the sky. So often the story is the same: Meteorologist predicts heavy rain resulting in flooding. Citizens plans for a rainy day and cancel programmes/picnics. A last-minute change to storm track means it only drizzles, not even to wet the soil. Public bitterly complains. And such issues still carry on- and when we know it why even bother to depend on the weatherman. No one is powerful than God or Mother nature- they have their own way to put the spell whenever they want to.

And regarding the children going to school these days-how many of them go walking to school, probably only a small percentage. Either they get dropped to school by their parents in vehicles or van/auto-rickshaw drivers drop them or may take the school bus- and when that’s the case why even do they need a holiday even if it rains. Only a few children have to bear the brunt of the rain, who walk a few distances. Recalling our school days, we all went to school in heavy rains, and we never got holidays. We loved to walk in the rain going to school. Seems like the present children are spoiled brats?

Guess what? The reason to give holidays anticipating bad weather, is because the administration doesn’t want to get accountable if a child gets stuck in the floods or gets drowned in the flooded drain. Whose fault is this? It’s the fault of our lovely smart engineers/contractors of our so-called “Smart City” who lacked proper planning of the city’s infrastructure, also due to the shabby drainage work which results in water overflowing and flooding and many other issues. Even after Mangaluru City was soaked and swallowed under floods due to these issues during the last heavy spell of rainfall we had in May 2018, still no action has been taken to rectify these problems. And just to wash their hands off, children are given holidays to be on a safer side.

Mangaluru had heavy rains when we also went to school or college, but it wasn’t flooded as we see now. Blame it on multi-storied buildings that have sprung up, poor design of roads with no provision for water drains, clogged drainage, etc are the reasons for present such chaos. When holidays are declared for schools suddenly just because of heavy rain forecast, it also messes up the school plans.

In conclusion, having flopped quite a few times in declaring holidays depending on the word of the weatherman/ Meteorologists 24 hours in advance, next time if the district administration is concerned about the safety of the school children, they could wait until a few hours prior to the school opening, and depending on how the weather looks outside, it could call for school/college closure. It’s okay to give holidays to schools in Villages or remote areas, where school children walk miles, whereas in the City schools/PUC students get dropped near their institutions by private/tourist vehicles or school buses. So why even holidays for them when it rains? Oh well!

Many institutions management and teachers may not be happy with the holidays declared every now and then which will screw up the school year agenda. With all the latest technology we have, the message could be reached to be parents either through SMS/Whatsapp or any other quick way one could think off. And once again, all the school students who’ll be getting a lucky holiday tomorrow will be either playing cricket or playing games on their electronic gadgets, and while the college students will be either loitering inside the Mall or those having GF’s will have some romantic spree watching a movie in multiples cinemas. But for sure not many will stay home- that’s for sure.

And I have a feeling that it would be NICE WEATHER on SATURDAY (Tomorrow)!  Trust me, and not the weatherman? And if my prediction on weather happens to be wrong, then you all can curse me as you do to the weatherman?

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