Where the government schools across the country are in miserable condition, Chandigarh has the proud distinction of ensuring world-class education to the students in its government schools. Chandigarh administration has made laudable effforts to not just swell the literacy rate, but ensure quality education for all.
Recently, Chandigarh administration roped in men and women of eminence as guest faculty for government schools in Chandigarh, and we all lauded the initiative. However, there seems to be two worlds where we are living. One world where everything is rosy and cheerful and every problem is nipped in the bud before it acquires a gigantic form, while the other neglected and disadvantaged world.
The contrast can be easily noticed between the government schools in the heart of Chandigarh and those that lie in its periphery. The posh government schools in sectors 15, 16, 35 etc. are blessed with all the modern amenities, while those on the outskirts (for instance, Mauli Colony, Hallo Majra and the like) still fight to have a bricked boundary wall. Though the Right to Education Act clearly requires all the schools to have basic infrastructural facilities to ensure stimulating study environment, yet the law is flouted and nobody seems to care.
These schools have no proper infrastructure, boundary walls and proper playgrounds. Stray cattle and stray dogs are the most common unannounced visitors. In line with the Indian government’s ‘Swachh Bharat’ programme, students are often lectured on keeping their surroundings clean, but the stinking heaps of garbage dumped around their schools already teaches them a distressing lesson on the gap between the ‘walk and the talk’. The mud puddles become a breeding ground for mosquitoes putting their health at stake.
They seem to be poor cousins of the well-off government schools about which we all boast proudly.
Doesn’t these schools require proper attention to become the flourishing ground for young minds?
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