Schools in the national capital have been ordered to shut down for 15 days starting January 1 during the trial period of odd-even vehicle formula by the Delhi government. School buses would run under the fleet of Delhi Transport Corporation or DTC from January 1-15.

“To make the new Scheme functional with least disturbance to our children and also to augment public transport during the ‘Odd Even Scheme’ days, the government has decided to declare holidays for all schools from January 1 to 15 and also to procure the services of school buses for the requirement of DTC at notified rates,” an official notification by Directorate of Education (DoE) said.

“This order may result in some deviation to the number of school days prescribed in the Right to Education Act, but the government is of the opinion that we can be flexible about the number of days in the interest of health and wellbeing of our children for all times to come,” it added.

The DoE has directed all government schools and un-aided/recognised private schools, to declare holidays during the period.

“It further, ordered that all the un-aided recognised private schools shall provide their fleet of buses to be kept at the disposal of Delhi Transport Corporation for which it has separately notified nodal officers at Depot as well as Zonal levels,” the communication sent to schools read.

Last week, Chief Justice TS Thakur had called the pollution level in the national capital “embarrassing” and had asked for immediate solutions.

Facing flak over the crisis, the Delhi government had, earlier this month, said that odd and even numbered cars would be allowed on alternate days in the city for a trial period from January 1 to January 15.