PETA will now teach government school students in Delhi how to love animals. Here's how it will work

A circular has been issued that details this initiative. The education department took this decision after PETA India approached it in September 2021
Pic: Edexlive
Pic: Edexlive

Students in government schools in Delhi will now be trained by People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India on why they should love animals. The Delhi Education Department has announced that PETA will be conducting Compassionate Citizen classes, a humane education programme launched for government schools.

A circular has been issued that details this initiative. The Education Department took this decision after PETA India approached it in September 2021. Puja Mahajan, PETA India's Associate Director of Education and Youth Outreach, says, "Children have a natural affinity for animals and this programme is designed to help them carry their compassion into adulthood."

So what is the Compassionate Citizen programme all about? According to the release issued by PETA, the programme was developed for students aged 8 to 12 years. It consists of a teacher's guide, reproducible activity sheets — including a colouring sheet and a kindness pledge that children can sign — a full colour wall poster, an engaging 23-minute video, and an insert listing easy ways by which teachers and schools can encourage students to help animals.

Moreover, PETA says that the digital platform makes it easier for teachers to use with students who are now learning online. The programme also aligns itself according to the school curriculum as it embodies language arts, science, social studies, environmental and value-education subjects. It can benefit animal rights and eco clubs, the release also states.

Delhi government schools had held a similar view almost a decade ago. That view was endorsed by the Animal Welfare Board of India, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (KVS), and the education ministries/departments of Andhra Pradesh, Chandigarh, Goa, Gujarat, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, and Telangana, apart from Delhi. The revamped version (which includes worksheets that can be used digitally) has also been endorsed by the Haryana education department.

But this is not the first time PETA's programme has been used. Previously, more than 1.9 lakh schools, including private, public, international, CBSE-affiliated, KVS, and government schools in the states and union territories mentioned above have also implemented this programme. The programme has managed to reach nearly 89.8 million children across India, says the release. 

Edited by Bidushi Das

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