Students appearing in board exams tremble in classrooms sans windows
SHOPIAN: About 1400 students at Government Boys Higher Secondary School Shopian are studying in eight classrooms. The enrolment in the institute requires at least 23 classrooms to conduct smooth classwork.
The eight available rooms have no windows, which, school authorities say, have been broken by unknown persons during protests.
The institution, established in 1951, has seen no addition in terms of infrastructure. Students say that the computer lab “has tiny number of computers not sufficient for the number of students in the school”.
“We prefer to go to schools in other districts for our studies. This school is too congested,” a student said. Muhammad Omar Dalal, a resident of Shopian, alleged that the institution was suffering because of the callousness of the authorities of the education department.
The School authorities say they have constructed a new building for computer laboratory, but the new lab has not been made functional yet. “We have bought all the equipment for an upgraded computer lab, and we are waiting for technicians to install those computers,” Principal Government Boys Higher Secondary School Shopian, Abdul Majeed said.
As board examinations started this winter session, the school is housing three examination centres for 10th class and two more for 12th class. School authorities, however, refute that they house any examination center.
Iffat Jan, a student appearing for class 10 exams in the school said that there was no heating arrangement in the halls. “Leave aside the heating arrangement, there were no windows in the examination rooms. Our hands freeze and we can’t write our papers comfortably,” she added.
The school principal says that they need at least 22 class rooms and three examination halls to run the institution smoothly. “Despite knocking the doors of higher authorities, we have not seen any up-gradation of infrastructure,” he said. The windows, he said, will be installed “soon, after the approval of funds from the department”.
Officials of the education department, wishing anonymity said that government has ordered them to keep the premises of the boys higher secondary school open for sports activities of kids in the town. “While the gate remains open, anybody can go inside. Some vagabonds damaged the property, which is also a reason that there were no windows in class rooms and window panes were damaged by them,” a staffer said.
School insiders say the library and the laboratory of the institution is in the same state as it was a decade ago. “Other than adding a tiny stock of books, they (authorities) have not added any updated study material to the institution library,” said a staffer at the school.
A lecturer, who works in the institution, said that some of the students were hell bent to damage the windows and other infrastructure of the school. He added that commodes of four bathrooms have been damaged by students. “They must know that these things are their own property and they must keep it safe, it’s their moral responsibility,” he said.
Chief education officer Shopian said that they have built a new washroom in the school and his office has asked the school principal to submit a report regarding the lack of facilities in the institution. He said that they were adding books annually to the library and government has earmarked an amount of Rs 25,000 per year for books.
Minister of education, Syed Muhammad Altaf Bukhari told Kashmir Reader that the issue of lack of infrastructure was not brought into his notice by anybody. “I will ask for a report from the concerned authorities about the lack of infrastructure and then I will see what to do with it,” he said.