Underscoring the need for making policy changes in the education system, Himachal Pradesh Education Minister Rohit Thakur called for joint efforts to curb drug menace in the state.
He directed the Education Department to make necessary policy changes in education system while presiding over the review meeting of the Education Department here on Saturday.
He said that the Education Department should function jointly with police, social justice and empowerment, rural development and panchayati raj departments for the eradication of drugs from the state.
Thakur said that ignorance about the consequences of the drugs, sheer curiosity, mental, emotional and psychological reasons often draw students into drug addiction.
He urged the National Council for Education, Research and Training (NCERT) and Himachal Pradesh Board of School Education (HPBOSE) to prepare an age-appropriate curriculum to educate children about the ill effects of drug abuse and integrate the same into the curriculum of schools and colleges. The minister also stressed on the need to have a state-wide mental health helpline through which virtual counseling of children could be carried out even in the remotest parts of the state.
He said that besides making yoga, sports, and physical activities a mandatory part in the curriculum the school authorities must conduct capacity-building sessions jointly with the Social Justice and Empowerment department.
Thakur also stressed on the periodic visits of psychologists, and counsellors for conducting drug awareness campaigns in schools and colleges.
It will help strengthen the mental and physical health of children that would help in weaning them away from drugs, said the minister.