Sopore: The upgraded Higher Secondary School in Botingoo village of Sopore, one of the oldest educational institutions in this north Kashmir town, is craving for basic facilities.
The school was established in 1927 as a primary school facility and later upgraded to run classes up to 10th standard. The school was further upgraded to higher secondary level in 2007.
About 91 years after its establishment, the school is without adequate infrastructure.
A group of students at the school complained of poor infrastructure, especially lack of classrooms and washrooms.
“After it was upgraded in 2007, the basic facilities should also have been upgraded so that it could have met the rising demand for quality educational institutions,” they said.
They said the lack of basic infrastructure including washrooms for the students as well as for the teachers is only a few in the long lists of problems suffered by them.
Around 650 students are presently enrolled at this institution and there is lack of space. “Currently, we have only two small buildings available and one among them was declared unsafe for the students by R&B department years back which has became an open habitat for birds and stray dogs,” the principal of the school, Mehraj-ul-din said.
He said that they have left no stone unturned to apprise the authorities about the dilapidated condition of the school but to no avail. “We once again request the administration and concerned authorities to wake up and try to redress the issue,” he said.
He also said that lack of basic facilities not only affects the quality of education at the school but also making tough for the teachers to continue their routine class work.
General Auqaf Committee Botingoo President, Haji Nisar Ahmed said that the old building of the school is in a dilapidated condition, posing threat to the lives of students and teachers. “The standard of education in this school is not satisfactory as in this digital age lack of proper infrastructure especially toilet facility is a complete apathy. In order to improve education, the authorities should address these issues at the earliest,” he said.
The locals of the area alleged that the government has failed to pay any attention towards the institute. “We have no option but to send our kids to this school only, till this date nobody from the government has visited the institute even after several requests made by us and principle of this school,” they said.
When contacted, Chief Education Officer Baramulla, Abdul Ahad said that they have already sent a proposal to higher authorities regarding the new building for the school. “I will once again take up this issue to the higher authorities and will try to address this genuine demand as soon as possible,” he said.