Faridkot, Punjab: Government Primary School, Sanjay Nagar, here, which is surrounded by slum areas like Jot Ram Basti, leaves much to be desired as far as basic education of children is concerned.
The classrooms are overcrowded, are not well lit and a lot of noise make the atmosphere anything but academic. Students find it difficult to hear what is being taught because of the loud noise.
The school has 315 students from classes 1 to 5. As there is a shortage of classrooms, the class 1 with 50 students and the class 2 with 35 students have been shifted to a one-room accommodation 1 km from the main primary school building.
“Because we could not provide the seating arrangements to so many students here, we had to make a temporary arrangement and now two classes are being held at the vacated building of the public health department, close to the railway crossing on Talwandi road,” teachers said.
This one room is also unsafe. “We usually hold classes outside the building as it is not in good shape. It is risky, especially in the rainy season, and we normally do not hold classes inside the room,” said teachers.
The two classes were shifted to the building about two years ago. The building does not have a proper power connection. “In the rainy season, mosquitoes trouble the children,” teachers said.
“We are helpless as far as teaching is concerned. Mere whispers by children make the atmosphere noisy. The overcrowded place also creates health problems. The noisy environment and suffocation, which we feel sometimes due to the smoke from the school kitchen and because of the congested atmosphere in the school have a negative effect on the health of schoolchildren,” teachers said.
“The noisy atmosphere has also led to a change in our behaviour. We have started speaking loudly and are afraid these things might be affecting children also. During the summer, the situation becomes worse due to power cuts,” teachers said.
SHORTAGE OF SPACE
According to the teachers, there are only two rooms to accommodate all classes. “The three other rooms in the building are too old and even smaller and unlit to hold any classes. Some of the students are made to sit in the verandah,” teachers said.
“The school has less that 400 square yard of space and about 315 students. How can one expect all-round physical and mental development of children in such a place? What to say of the extra-curricular activities, even teaching them is difficult here,” said a teacher.
According to teachers, due to the shifting of the two classes, some of the students even have to cover over 2 km of distance to reach the place and it often leads to students arriving late and being absent.DEO primary Parminder Singh Brar said, “I am aware of the problem and we have already forward edit to the DGSE office. But we have failed to find any space to which the school could be shifted or where the building could be constructed. The main building is old and according to experts, we also cannot construct rooms above it. I am trying my best to provide a solution to the school.”
Source: The Tribune