From a Correspondent
Bokajan, Sept 14: Sarumanthi English LP School, a government-aided lower primary school under Bokajan Education Block is in a pathetic condition. The school was established back in 1962 with an aim to educate the otherwise poor and deprived tribal children of the area. The most glaring of the problems with the school is that of infrastructure. Poorly maintained building, dilapidated and dingy classroom do not make for a learning conductive atmosphere. The walls of the lone classroom have developed cracks and the roof, which is in a bad shape, may invite tragedy any moment. The quality of education imparted in this school was limited. Most of the students could not read, write or do basic arithmetic.
The school has a single building which serves as a common classroom for students of Class I to Class V. A visit to the school, which has 43 registered students on record, revealed the sorry state of affairs in the school. The school also reportedly remained closed due to the lack of teacher for a couple of months post summer vacation.
The disparity between these rural schools in comparison to the urban schools is incredibly vast and evident. The lack of teachers in many other government-aided schools in the hill district of Karbi Anglong has seemed to have slowed down the government’s ambitious plan of improving the rural educatiol standards at par with the urban areas.
Sarumanthi English LP School is now run by a single teacher who takes all the five classes single-handedly at the same time. Earlier, there were three teachers deputed in the school, including the headmaster and two other female teachers. While, the headmaster retired last March, the two female teachers commenced leave due to persol reasons since June. Compulsory mid-day meal is also not served to the students in the school since retirement of the headmaster.
The SSA scheme that provides cooked food and free elementary education to all children between the age group of 6-14 years is yet to see proper implementation in the hills of Karbi Anglong. Even eight years after the ectment of the RTE Act, the children of the poor and underprivileged tribals are not able to avail these basic facilities. The attitude of the department officials as well as the political representatives towards the injustice and plight of these children is callous and indifferent. These children come from the poorest of families but the authorities seem to have lost all sense of responsibility and duty towards educating this poor and underprivileged class.