MANDYA: The government school at the temple town of Melkote in Mandya district, where famous litterateur Pu Ti Narasimhachar and veteran journalist Khadri Shamanna studied is on the verge of closure. The beginning of the end of this 135-year-old school became clear in the last academic year when it faced a mass exodus.
A large number of parents worried over safety of their children in the school’s crumbling building pulled out their wards and got them admitted to the other schools. The fact that some of the former students of this school are finding their way to government schools nearby is a testimony to the negligence of the authorities.
At present, the school has no students in class I and II. Last year, only four students were admitted to class I and II. On the other hand, the strength of the nearby Government Higher Primary Girls School has been increasing over the last few years. About 68 students migrated from the century-old school to the latter.
In 2008-09, the total strength of Class I to VII was 110; the strength slipped to 80 the next year. In 2010-11, the total strength was 60 which declined to 55 in 2011-12. Also, the school does not have proper benches and desks, toilets, drinking water facilities, or even a physical education teacher. The PT teacher was not provided because the strength is below 200. Only four teachers are working in the school. Construction of the compound wall taken up by the Melkote gram panchayat is yet to be completed.
BEO Swamy said SDMC and the headmaster have taken the initiative to motivate parents to send their children to the school. The department is also trying to provide basic amenities to the school.