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School Bag Policy 2020

  • 05 Jan 2021
  • 4 min read

Why in News

The Directorate of Education has issued a circular asking schools to follow the new ‘School Bag Policy, 2020’ released by the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT).

Key Points

  • The Circular:
    • School teachers should inform the students in advance about the books and notebooks to be brought to school on a particular day and frequently check their bags to ensure that they are not carrying unnecessary material.
    • It is the duty and the responsibility of the school management to provide quality potable water in sufficient quantities to all the students in the school so that they do not need to carry water bottles from their homes.
  • About the School Bag Policy 2020:
    • It lays down the guidelines on homework and weight of school bags for classes I to XII.
      • School bags should not be more than 10% of the bodyweight of students across classes I to X and there should be no bags in pre-primary students.
      • It recommends no homework up to class II and a maximum of two hours per week for classes III to V, one hour a day for classes VI to VIII and two hours a day for classes IX and above.
    • The Policy will also require schools to introduce infrastructural changes as students will not be able to carry many books daily.
      • The schools need to provide lockers right from preschool to senior secondary to enable children to leave books in school and carry home only what is required.
    • It adds that the teachers should take the responsibility of checking the weight of school bags of the students every three months on a day selected for the whole class and any information about heavy bags should be communicated to the parents.
    • It adds that files and thin/light exercise books should be preferred to thick/heavy ones.
  • Problems of heavy school bags:
    • The heavy school bag has severe/adverse physical effects on growing children which can cause damage to their vertebral column and knees.
    • A heavy backpack can pull on the neck muscles contributing to headache, shoulder pain, lower back pain and neck and arm pain.
    • The posture of the body also gets affected to a great extent which in the long term develops imbalances in the body and affects the health of the nervous system.


  • It is an autonomous organization under the Ministry of Education (MoE) which is responsible for:
    • Ensuring qualitative improvement in school education by undertaking and promoting research in areas related to school education.
    • Prepare and publish model textbooks, supplementary material.
    • Develop and disseminate innovative educational techniques and practices.
  • Act as a nodal agency for achieving the goals of Universalization of Elementary Education.


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