Yes, you read it right. A school in Kerala had the brains to implement the period leave but we are still argumentative and skeptical about it. Are we not sure that some women experience pain and discomfort during menstruation or are we negligent of the fact?
Anyways lets get back to the school. Almost 105 years ago, in 1912, a Kerala educational institute called ‘The Government Girls School’ located in Tripunithura, Cochin (presently Ernakulam district) allowed its girl students to take ‘period leave’ during the time of their annual examination. They had even given them the option of writing the exam later.
How amazing is that? This news started doing rounds when a book named ‘Kerala in the 19th Century’ written by historian P Bhaskaranunni came to surface. This book highlighted the various aspects of the southern state of Kerala during the 19th and early 20th century.
The attendance rules were the same and the students were required to attend the school for almost 300 days in a year but the educational policies were way ahead of their time. It’s written in the book that
Tests were conducted regularly and it was necessary for students to appear for the tests.
But, it had become an issue in Tripunithura girls school where students and women teachers would not come during the time of menstruation.
When the headmaster V P Vishwanatha Iyer noticed that women teachers and girl students often take leaves while they are on their periods, he approached the school inspector in Thrissur. He discussed the issue that teachers and girls of the school take leaves during their menstrual cycles regularly, and in just a matter of 5 days, the school authorities changed the school policy.
…The Education Director had issued an order on January 24 1912 stating that those students who were unable to write annual exams during the time of menstruation should be permitted to write the same on another occasion.”
The school authorities noticed women’s discomfort and their plight didn’t go unnoticed. Even without asking they were given a leave even in exams. Now that women are bold enough and are asking authorities to give them a day’s leave in their periods, authorities are making all sorts of excuses.
You remember the video we shared from Culture Machine where they tell people about the ‘First Day of The Period Leave’. After Culture Machine, two more companies have come forward to give their female staff some consideration.
Others are still saying that Menstruation is a natural phenomenon like pregnancy and women can’t be given privileges over petty issues. They too suffer from sinuses you know and they are not asking for leaves.
To support the cause and get your office to introduce this policy, sign the petition on this link: https://www.change.org/p/period-leave…