BENGALURU: Students of Government VK Obaidullah School at Shivajinagar walk to their classes each morning with about a dozen policemen standing guard. The men in Khakhi were engaged to create a safe environment in the school since the IMA scam surfaced ten days ago.
The watchmen have quit and a platoon of policemen with their bus on the school premises is a constant. “It’s dangerous to have our children just walk out of the school with no one to restrict them from exiting,” said a parent.
“Earlier, children were made to sit in rows outside the school when the bell rang at 3:20 pm, and then let out in a disciplined manner. Now it’s chaos all round,” said Bilal Mohammed, another parent.
Almost every day, the school witnesses commotion of some sort, and government teachers who have been appointed in place of IMA-recruited teachers have complained to the authorities about the hostile environment which makes teaching difficult.
This, even when government teachers have been deputed -- 22 additional teachers for primary (in addition to the existing two) and two additional to high school (in addition to the existing 11). While teachers protested last week, parents voiced their dissent on Monday and Wednesday. Inside the classroom, twenty days into start of school, students are yet to receive their books. Parents are withdrawing their wards from the school admit them elsewhere. Others, like Bilal, say they have turned down other schools when IMA promised international standard in government school.
Notebooks were earlier given by IMA, while textbooks by the government. Government uniforms were replaced with bright collared-T-shirts over the past two years. While the older students claim that their initial tests have begun after the bridge course, sans textbooks, the younger children said they were shown television during class hours.
Parents, who have been fighting for quality education in this school, which is partly Urdu medium and partly English, negated claims that children were admitted only after they had invested in IMA.