A senior education official from the West Bengal government said that the government has decided to introduce a chapter on snakes in the secondary school curriculum from the next academic year.
This will educate students about the different types of snakes, what one should do at the sight of the reptile and their role in protecting bio-diversity, the official said.
The chapter, comprising details about venomous and non-venomous snakes, their Latin and common names and how one should react after sighting a snake in the neighborhood or in bushes, will be introduced in the Life Science subject of class eight, Chairman of Syllabus Committee Abhik Majumder told media here on Monday.
A draft of the curriculum has been prepared with the guidance of doctors from state-run R G Kar Medical College and Hospital, he said.
“We think introducing a chapter on snakes will serve the purpose of educating students and their parents about the different types of snakes, the role of snakes in protecting our bio-diversity, and preventive measures to stop the killing of the reptiles, including venomous ones,” Mr. Majumder said.
West Bengal Board of Secondary Education president Kalyanmoy Ganguly said, the board always wants to create awareness among students about the conservation of rich biodiversity and environment issues.
“The syllabus committee’s decision to introduce a chapter on snakes is a step in that direction,” Mr. Ganguly said. There are reports of deaths due to snake bites in rural areas of the state and incidents of killing of snakes after being caught by people, instead of alerting the Forest Department.