English-medium sections inaugurated recently at Devarayaneri school
English-medium education is now at easy reach for children of Narikorava community residing at Devarayaneri, a locality for gypsies in Tiruchi district, thanks to the decision of the State government to permit government and aided elementary schools to start an additional section in each standard for offering English-medium section.
The Narikorava Education and Welfare Society (NEWS) that runs the Thiruvallluvar Gurukula Elementary School in Devarayaneri was quick to derive the utility by appointing teachers on a temporary basis.
The English medium sections were inaugurated by Deputy Commissioner of Income Tax, Tiruchi, Ramalingam, recently.
There were no sanctioned posts for the English-medium sections, but there are sponsors who have been sustaining their support to the Narikorava children.
BHEL Tiruchi provided the main support to the school last year by providing a building estimated at Rs.33 lakh, under its Corporate Social Responsibility initiative.
The building with four classrooms, a room for the headmaster and another room for the staff members have come in handy for the NEWS to start the new English medium sections.
The BHEL had already donated another building with four classrooms for the school in 2008.
The management of Femina Hotel has constructed a compound wall.
Out of bounds till now
Till now, English-medium education had been out of bounds for Narikorava children in the locality.
For, most of them belonged to families categorised as Below Poverty Line.
The socioeconomic disadvantage was a setback for the community which is still struggling to be categorised as Scheduled Tribe.
The State government has recommended their case, but the Centre is yet to take a call.
At a meeting of well-wishers that the NEWS convened at the start of the academic year, philanthropists committed their support to meet the cost of teachers’ salaries till the State government sanctioned new posts for the school that awaits an upgrade in its status to start upper primary classes.
The secretary of NEWS, S.Mahendran, is confident that the start of English-medium sections would enhance the sense of self-esteem of the Narikorava children.
“Parents will no longer force their children to drop out of school. With the English-medium education, our children can now look forward to pursuing higher education with a sense of confidence," said Mr. Mahendran.