Many schools lack basic facilities in Udupi

In an attempt to provide basic infrastructural facilities to all schools, the District Public Instruction Department is ensuring that the basic amenities are made available at the earliest. However, there are many schools where these basic facilities are yet to be introduced.

There are 718 schools in the district, of which 106 are high schools and 612 are primary schools. Almost all high schools are acquainted with basic infrastructural facilities like playgrounds, drinking water facilities, power facilities and toilets. Out of 612 primary schools, as many as 150 primary schools are not provided with play grounds and around 15 primary schools in the district do not have power supply. However, water facilities and toilets are made available to all primary schools.

DDPI Nagendra Madhayastha told Deccan Herald that measures will be taken to set up play grounds in all these 150 primary schools within the commencement of next academic year. The list of schools that lack play grounds is prepared and proposal is designed.

The problem is that some schools do not have sufficient land for playground. Measures are taken to purchase some available land in the adjacent area and set up the playgrounds. Around 15 primary schools do not have power. However, the department has to wait for Mescom officials to locate the line connections in the area nearby schools.

“The department does not have enough funds for taking single power connection for these schools that are situated in remote areas. The cost of planting six to seven electricity polls to take connection from distant area is too pricy,” he added and said that almost all primary and high schools except for one high school are operating in own buildings in the district.

The staff vacancy is another problem that bothers the education process especially in the naxal hit belt. The DDPI said that measures are taken to solve the shortage of teachers in naxal infected areas. Teaching is not suffered and additional teachers in other schools are sent to schools in naxal affected region on temporary basis.

Besides, some 58 local eligible candidates were selected under naxal package to teach in the naxal hit areas. They are paid a sum of Rs 5,000 and they are relived at the end of the present academic year. In addition, there are around 150 vacancies.

Until the vacant posts are filled, measures will be taken for re-deployment of the available excess teachers. In case if a school has very few students, the students will be shifted to nearby schools. The redistribution process will get over by the end of March, he added.

The DDPI said as of now there is no threat of closure of schools and no schools were closed down in the current academic year in the district.  The schools are shut only when there is zero attendance. Currently, 15 schools in the district are operating with less than 10 students.

If the attendance is less than five students, then the students will be shifted to nearby schools. The schools will be temporarily closed and if there are more than five admissions in the next academic year, the school will start functioning as usual, he added.

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