Karnataka

The dilapidated state of classrooms

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Over 488 classrooms in 344 schools are in a dilapidated condition in Mysuru district and as many as 284 of the total classrooms were demolished recently.

The Education Department at the behest of the commissioner of the department and the Chief Executive Officer of Mysuru Zilla Panchayat had instructed BEOs (Block Education Officers) and the AEE (Assistant Executive Engineer) to demolish the classrooms. But, it has no plans to replace the demolished classrooms with new ones.

Now, the Education Department, along with the zilla panchayat, plans to request Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to allocate special grants to build new classrooms.

The Education Department’s list of classrooms which are old and in a dilapidated condition, include Mysuru taluk (98), T. Narsipur (89), Hunsur (58), H.D. Kote (64), K.R. Nagar (89), Nanjangud (40) and Periyapatna (50). As many as 41 classrooms had demolished in H.D. Kote, 37 in Hunsur, 60 in K.R. Nagar, 34 in Mysuru taluk, 35 in Nanjangud, 50 in Periyapatna and 27 in T. Narsipur.

Sources in the department said that the classrooms were demolished as a precautionary measure to avert any possible accidents. They said that the headmasters had been instructed not to hold classes in such rooms.

On why the department had resorted to demolition of classrooms without getting the approval to build new ones, the sources said that the department had put first the safety of schoolchildren and teachers.

Ministry refuses grant

The Education Department has sent a proposal to the Ministry of Human Resource Department to sanction grants to construct 84 classrooms. But, the Ministry refused to sanction the grants stating that many schools did not need more classrooms as they did not have sufficient number of students.

The Ministry asked the department to run classes in the existing rooms and to send a proposal when the student capacity was sufficient. It has also reportedly put various restrictions on the Education Department, forcing the latter to approach the Chief Minister for special grants.

Need for repair

There are over 1,920 elementary government schools in Mysuru district, with a total of 8,723 classrooms. Similarly, there are over 229 secondary schools comprising 1,521 classrooms. According to estimates prepared by authorities, the unit cost of building a classroom is Rs. 6.5 lakh.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 12:36:45 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/the-dilapidated-state-of-classrooms/article6578650.ece

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