LAHUNIPARA (SUNDARGARH): Students of Classes I to IV of Balisuda Project Upper Primary School are crammed into a single room as combined classes are run simultaneously in the absence of adequate classrooms.
The woes of the students and the teachers do not end here as the school’s remaining students belonging to Classes V to VIII usually study in a half-constructed building of Van Suraksha Samiti nearby.
The school, located about 5 km from NH-143 at Balisuda village in Darjing panchayat of Lahunipara block in the tribal-dominated Sundargarh, depicts sorry state of affairs of elementary education in remote pockets of the district.
Sources said the school had started way back in 1975, but later it run into trouble over land dispute. Finally, the school had to shift to the adjacent one classroom building.
Former block chairperson of Lahunipara Puni Munda said the old school was running smoothly from its old premises till 2005-06 when a villager claimed that part of the school was built on his land. Later, the Lahuniapra tehsildar earmarked another government land where a new building was constructed by the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA). About four years ago, the school was shifted to the new building, which has only one classroom, one office room and a small verandah, she said and added that more classrooms are urgently required to improve the condition of the school and ensure quality education to the poor tribal students.
School sources said as of now, the student strength stands at about 75 for eight classes and there are five teachers. The school has potential to bounce back with adequate resources and infrastructure, they added.
Villagers said the teachers have no option but to conduct four classes together. Four more classes are run at a half-constructed adjacent building. Primary class students thus find it hard to concentrate on their studies, they said.
Lahuniapara-A Zilla Parishad member Laxmi Kishan said recently she came to know about the poor condition of the school. She would place proposals for construction of adequate classrooms from the District Mineral Foundation (DMF) fund, she added.