Lunchbreak cut from 90 minutes to an hour as Puducherry schools attempt to control mischief

The Puducherry Education Department is cutting down lunchtime to an hour, a luxury for other schools that follow the half an hour routine, to prevent students from getting into trouble during breaks
While done to curb mischief, research shows that short lunchbreaks are detrimental to students health
While done to curb mischief, research shows that short lunchbreaks are detrimental to students health

Students in Puducherry schools will no longer enjoy their 90-minute lunch breaks, with the Puducherry Education Authorities changing school timings which came into effect on Tuesday. Authorities have brought in this sudden change in a bid to curb 'mischief' among students during recess. Students will, from now, only get a 60-minute lunch break, as compared to the regulatory 30 minutes followed by most schools.

The timing for government schools in urban areas of Puducherry was changed on Tuesday, after the quarterly holidays. Morning sessions will now start at 8.45 am and end at 12.25 pm, while the afternoon session will stretch between 1.30 pm and at 3.45 pm. 

This was done to reduce the long lunch break and prevent mischievous activities. Students go out of school campus and resort to activities that may invite trouble

Officials, School Education Department

However, researchers have in a study found that a longer lunch period at school could make children healthier. It found that students who have less than 20 minutes to eat their lunch consume significantly less of their meals, milk, and vegetables than those who are not as rushed. The findings suggest that children should have at least 25 minutes to eat their lunch.

However, school timings for rural schools remain unchanged. The Union Territory has 414 government schools with around 84,000 students

"Many children, especially those from low-income families, rely on school meals for up to half their daily energy intake so it is essential that we give students a sufficient amount of time to eat their lunches," said lead author of the study Juliana Cohen, adjunct assistant professor at Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in Boston, US.

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