Long hours of scheduled and unscheduled power cuts have disrupted the normal functioning of schools in the district and have left students in the dark as they get ready for annual examination.
Higher Secondary Board Practical examinations had began on February 8 and would continue till February 21. According to District Education Officer, R. Balamurali, physics and computer science practical exams could not be conducted without power supply. Majority of Government schools in the district did not have Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) systems.
The school principals were asked to contact Electricity Board Offices in their area to find out the time of power cuts and fix the exam schedule accordingly. The written part of the examination could be continued even when the power was not available, he said.
Standard XII students of City Corporation Higher Secondary School said that they found it difficult to prepare for practical examinations. “We were hopeful of scoring good marks in practical exam. But, most of us do not have computers at home and we are not able to use the computers at school to prepare for the computer science exam that is scheduled on February 13,” they said.
R. Vishalakshi, president, Federation of Association of Private Schools Coimbatore, said that since most of the private schools had UPS systems, there would not be any problem in conducting practical examinations. But, power cuts during early morning, evening and night time, would affect students, especially Standard X and XII students, who were preparing for board exams.
Students of lower classes were also affected as the schools find it difficult to use multimedia tools and computers. S. Iyyasamy, Principal, C.S.I. Primary School, Papanaickenpalayam, said except for one or two hours, there was no power supply at school during working hours. We were unable to use audio-visual tools. Many students said that they could not do their home work or study at home because of power cuts, he said.
According to R. Manimohan, Chairman, Students' Welfare Association of Parents' , Coimbatore, parents found it difficult to send children to school on time because of power cuts in the morning. “With scheduled and unscheduled power cuts, there is no power supply for over seven hours. People are compelled to buy UPS, " he said.