To enable the students of its schools acquire English language skills and enrich their knowledge through newspaper reading, the Coimbatore Corporation launched on Tuesday The Hindu’s Newspaper in Education programme for 26 of its 85 schools.

The Hindu is already carrying out this programme in private schools. Under this, resource persons teach students how to make the best out of reading newspapers; where they can find material to improve both knowledge and their resources in English language.

Under the programme launched on Tuesday, each of the 26 Corporation schools will be provided 25 copies of The Hindu every day.

Inaugurating the programme by handing over copies of The Hindu to students at the Corporation Higher Secondary School at Sidhapudur, Mayor R. Venkatachalam said the Corporation had allocated Rs.1 lakh for the scheme that was aimed at benefiting the students.

The Education Committee and the Corporation Council cleared the proposal quickly and this reflected the intention of the civic body to raise the standards of the students studying in its schools.

The Mayor said that by improving knowledge through extensive reading, students could not only go on to become civil services officers or top level executives, they could also occupy the very demanding post of a Mayor. “City administration is not an easy task. It requires people with a lot of acumen. You can occupy this post and do well if you use the opportunity given to you now,” he told a gathering of students. Deputy Mayor N. Karthik pointed out that newspapers were a source of knowledge. One could get a lot of information on diverse fields of activity.

The students of Government or Corporation schools were not inferior to those in the private schools. Appreciating The Hindu’s contribution to the field of education in the form of programmes such as NIE, he said this provided immense opportunities to students to learn more than what was taught in classrooms.

Regional General Manager of The Hindu D. Rajkumar said NIE was part of the newspaper’s corporate-social responsibility. The newspaper was being provided at a substantial concession so that it could be an affordable resource for learning for them. The NIE provided knowledge beyond academics, but without affecting the school curriculum, Mr. Rajkumar said.

Corporation Commissioner Anshul Mishra, Leader of the Opposition V.N. Udayakumar, Education Committee Chairman R. Kalyanasundaram, members P. Shobana, V.K.S.K. Senthilkumar, Thamizhselvi and Meena Loganathan and Corporation Education Officer (in-charge) T. Raju were present.

Mr. Kalyanasundaram and the committee members said later that the committee scrutinised the NIE proposal and found it to be of immense benefit to the students. The committee was focussed on improving the standards of education in the Corporation schools and wanted all the students to scale great heights in their career.

Ms. Shobana was already taking spoken English classes for Corporation school students. Mr. Senthilkumar, Ms. Thamizhselvi and Ms. Loganathan said the NIE programme was one of the many initiatives the Corporation and the Education Committee were taking up to build academic and co-curricular skills in students.

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