All schools must have playgrounds as sports and Physical Activities are integral to education: Madras High Court

In a recent judgment the Madras High Court has emphasized the importance of Physical Education as a part of school curriculum and directed the authorities to constitute a committee to provide the infrastructural development for playground/gym etc. The matter was between Dr. P R Subaschandran v. State and others (WP No. 17095 of 2018) and was presided over by Hon’ble Mr. Munishwar Nath Bhandari, C.J and Hon’ble Mrs. Justice N.Mala.


A petition under Article 226 of the Indian Constitution was filed for a writ of mandamus to order the proper respondents to create a set of standards, guidelines, or rules for the proper teaching of physical education in public and private schools with adequate infrastructure facilities for schoolchildren’s physical education, such as playgrounds/gyms, etc.

The petitioner emphasized that physical education was not given adequate attention in schools which further caused lack of infrastructure and physical education teachers. Mentioning the reports that only 40 out of 9000 schools in TamilNadu hire a Physical Education teacher the petitioner emphasized on the poor planning and lack of vision of the state.


The state was ordered by the court to form a committee to oversee and make sure that physical education is given the proper priority and the necessary resources are made accessible in all schools. 

The committee will be established by the government within a month, with the secretary of the government’s department of school education serving as its chair. The committee will determine which schools lack the necessary facilities to provide physical education and will make sure that it is given the attention it deserves.

The court read the legal provisions emphasizing the value of sports facilities and physical activity, and it gave the respondent authorities instructions to make sure that these rules were strictly followed in CBSE, Matriculation, and State Board. The court further ordered the authorities to take into account schools’ requests to use Municipality/Corporation public fields. There were still a number of schools without playgrounds, thus the court further ordered the authorities to enforce compliance with the Government Order requiring them.

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