Over 2,000 students of Chromepet boys’ higher secondary school suffer

While the State government strives to provides nutritious noon meals, it does very little to ensure high standards of hygiene and sanitation in government schools, say residents of Chromepet.

There are 2,016 students in the nearly 50-year-old Government Boys Higher Secondary School on CLC Works Road, including 30 girls in the vocational stream in the higher secondary section. There are two toilet complexes on the premises, one near the main entrance and other behind the main block. Both are in a bad shape and have been rendered unusable. Students are forced to relive themselves on the floor inside the toilet complex as the closets are damaged or soiled and doors broken. In the absence of water supply, some students use their bottles of drinking water.

Residents of Chromepet who recently queued up at the school to get their National Population Register identity cards said they were shocked to see the condition of the toilets. Despite the completion of the underground drainage project in New Colony, a connection to the school’s toilets was yet to be provided.

Officials of the school education department said the problem had arisen after the post of a supervisor for toilet maintenance fell vacant.

The neighbouring government school for girls had an ayah who was paid a sum of less than Rs. 4,000 a month, members of the parent teachers association of the school said.

Members said they were aware of the problem and were taking measures to solve it. They had contacted philanthropists, former students and the private sector for their support, they said.

A former government school headmaster, who retired as joint director in the department of school education, said the problem was not restricted to the Chromepet school or other government schools in Kancheepuram district, but was pervasive in Tamil Nadu. The problem was worse in the city suburbs and unless there was a mechanism in place for appointment of at least a part-time supervisor, ensuring water supply and provision of proper aid to the staff, the situation would not improve, he said.

A PTA member said there would be a change in the situation in a week, beginning with a connection to the underground drainage system.

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