Private nursery and primary schools find themselves in a predicament

The over 200 nursery and primary schools in the district that had to helplessly watch a chunk of students shifting to panchayat union schools due to the lockdown have their fingers crossed against the backdrop of strong indications that the 2021-22 session may not begin with in-person classes.

While matriculation schools could manage to survive by paying less salaries to teachers citing the low collection of fee, the private nursery and primary schools where parents in rural parts used to send their children for English-medium education find themselves stranded.

The slowdown in economy had caused parents in rural parts who were mostly farm labourers and construction workers to shift their wards from nursery schools to panchayat union primary schools due to their inability to pay the fee, a Block Education Officer (BEO) said.

Barring the students admitted under Right to Education Act, other students in the nursery and primary schools are not entitled to freebies of the government.

“As per records, the schools are functional, but most of the schools have not been able to have any interface with the students for an entire year,” the BEO said.

According to a senior official in the School Education Department, there was no cause for serious concern among the parents since their wards will be promoted to the next level in any case due to the policy of the government to assign 'all-pass' results to all students till VIII standard.

As per official records, there are as many as 226 nursery and primary schools with classes from LKG to V standard in the district spread over Anthanallur, Mannachanallur, Musiri, Marungapuri, Lalgudi, Manapparai, Thottiyam, Vaiyampatti, Uppiliapuram, Tiruchi West, Tiruchi Urban, Tiruverumbur, Thuraiyur, Thathaiyengarpettai, Pullambadi, and Manikandam blocks.

Not many nursery and primary schools pay decent salaries to teachers, and the instances of these schools having well-qualified and experienced teachers are rare.

“Even matriculation schools pay teachers salaries only in the range of 50 percent citing low fee collection. This being the case, the teachers of nursery schools have been pushed into a situation of suffering in silence for another year,” a functionary of a teacher' association said.

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Printable version | May 14, 2021 3:32:07 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Tiruchirapalli/private-nursery-and-primary-schools-find-themselves-in-a-predicament/article34384878.ece

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