Jagatsinghpur, July 30 (LocalWire): The state and central governments are spending crores of rupees to ensure quality education but nearly 162 primary schools have closed down in this district due to less number of students.
To raise the quality of education, efforts were made by the government to open primary schools after every kilometer.
But the closure of these schools due to shortage of students became a matter of concern and the school and mass education department decided to merge schools with less than 10 students with nearby primary schools.
During a survey, it was found that the student strength of Bata Belari Primary School under Bamdeipur panchayat was less than 10, so the department merged it with the nearby Kankardia Primary School under the same panchayat.
But the villagers protested the move saying that ‘during the survey, wrong data was given as there are 16 students in this school.
We have vowed not to send the children to the other school because it is two to three kilometers away.
Five to 10 year-old children will not be able to go that far because of the bad condition of roads and it is also risky as a river flows next to the road.’
Now, the fate of these 16 children is uncertain because they are not attending classes in the new school and are studying in the school verandah, taught by private teachers engaged by the guardians.
‘Villagers have decided to run this school without any government aid and will not send the children to the new school where the department completed their admission after the closure of this school.
The parents have sought the intervention of higher authorities’ including the education minister,’ sarpanch of Bamdeipur panchayat, Gopinath Samantray, said.
Last year, the department had merged Dhuanpada Primary School under Naugaon block with Korua UP School but the parents had said the merger was illegal as the school has 21 students.
Protesting illegal merger villagers had engaged private teachers.
After the intervention of department officials, the children have been admitted to the new school this year.
Block Education Officer, Erasama, Jayant Kumar Ray, said, ‘The department has received the complaints regarding merger of Bata Belari Primary school.
During survey, the attendance of this school was less than 10 and therefore it was merged with the nearby school’.