A time-table structure may not be the ideal solution to cope with the heavy book bags that students usually carry to school.
With two weeks before the start of the new school term, President of the National Primary School Principals Association (NPSPA) Lance Mottley said that other factors such as the maturity of the students must also be considered. He said primary school students especially may not be responsible enough to pack the necessary school books needed for the day, on their own. He also noted a correlation between schools and students who follow the time table and the class of parents who lived in certain communities. He said the parents from affluent communities usually offer more support to their children and as a result could easily follow a time-table structure. He noted that, “not all schools are made equal” suggesting that those students who do not follow the time table, may not have the parental support of their comrades, and may also encounter other social issues.
Mottley was responding to Rafina Ali-Boodoosingh, President of the National Parent Teachers Association. Speaking on Power 102’s Morning Breakfast Show, Boodoosingh believes that the time-table structure could help to alleviate some of the strain that students suffer as a result of carrying heavy bags to school on a daily basis. She did agree that children should get help with packing their bags as they may be tempted to put extra items that are not needed for the day’s classes.
Boodoosingh raised the issue as it was revealed that the majority of the weight in students’ bags were caused by textbooks. During a study, more than 50 per cent of the students in standards one to four carry schoolbags above the recommended benchmark. Overall, 38 per cent of the pupils carry schoolbags above the recommended benchmark.