Mangaluru, June 08, 2018: The district Public Instruction Department is taking all measures to save the Kannada medium schools which have fewer students and to bring back the schools to the stable working condition.
One school in Kundapur educational zone had to be shut down owing to less number of students. The Harkebalu Lower Primary School in Siddapur had to be shut down and the students were shifted to the Higher Primary School in Siddapur.
DDPI Sheshashayana Karinje told DH that as of now, there is no major threat. However, a lot of parents are sending their children to English medium schools, with the increasing obsession with the language.
He also added that the state government is making all attempts to offer required infrastructural facilities and ensure quality education similar to English medium schools.
Failed attempts : The 50-year-old school in Harkebalu was shut down despite all attempts made by the department to stop the closing down of the school, said BEO Ashok Kamath. He added that the school consists of 5 classes (first to fifth standard). Last year, there was only one student in each of the class. Earlier, nearly 60 students were studying in the school. Owing to the increasing number of English medium and private schools in Siddapur, the number of students at Harkebalu School dropped to single digit number. The number of students drastically decreased in the past three years. There was only one teacher who handled all the classes.
Kamath said that the school is closed temporarily, and if there are signs of an increase in the numbers, the school will be reopened. Out of five students, three of them joined other schools in Siddapura for the 2018-19 academic year. Hence the remaining students were shifted to Higher Primary school in Siddhapura, he added.
The DDPI said that in order to improve the attendances in Kannada medium schools, the department is now taking the help of the school alumni. The old students’ groups are made to work towards increasing the number of students by improving the infrastructural facilities.
Need for teachers : He added that the basic need for the students is one teacher per class. In some cases like Government Higher Primary Schools in Uppunda, Siddahapura, Basrur and High School in Byndoor, the old students’ associations are trying to uplift the school. The associations are contributing towards appointing the required number of teachers and are also arranging for the transport facilities.
Number of students for the present academic year has increased in a few schools as the administration has ensured one teacher per class.
Plans have been chalked out for the schools could provide transport facilities to students coming from far off places. Besides, the department is also forming the old students’ associations in as many schools as possible, he added. However, the problem is more in areas where the old students’ associations were not formed, as people did not come forward. Kannada medium schools were not promoted in these villages.