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High-rise gone, wait begins for government school to open its gates

Every day, while on his way home, Abhishek’s longing eyes would search for his school gate, which has remained shut for two-and-a-half years following the collapse of 11-storeyed building.

Published: 04th November 2016 03:09 AM  |   Last Updated: 04th November 2016 05:20 AM   |  A+A-

DEMOLISHSS8
Express News Service

CHENNAI: Every day, while on his way home, Abhishek’s longing eyes would search for his school gate, which has remained shut for two-and-a-half years following the collapse of 11-storeyed building in Moulivakkam killing 61 people.

“My school had a larger space and bigger classrooms. We also had a lab,” says Abhishek, one of the 350 students who have been shifted to the Adi Dravidar School in Jothi Nagar which is nearly 1.5 km from his previous school. Not equipped to accommodate an entire school, the other school is cramped up, lacking space and facilities for both students and faculty.

A schoolgirl and her mother look at the rubble a day after a 11-storey structure was brought down through controlled demolition at Moulivakkam | Sunish P Surendran


The class 12 student, a resident of Bhoomadevi Nagar near the crash site in Moulivakkam, hopes that with the demolition of the second building which was termed unsafe, the school would open its gates again.
A staff on condition of anonymity said that nearly 350 students were transferred from the school near the crash site to a nearby school which has a strength of 250 students. “This school has only eight classrooms and students have to sit outside. The situation was too tough to manage and we had started a shift system for a year,” says the staff.

Though the government had offered them a couple of sheds which were converted into classrooms, it is not adequate. “However, we have ended the shift system now and begun regular classes,” the staff says.
But a peep inside the school tells a different story as children were seen sitting on stairs and verandah of the school while attending classes. The irony is despite the lack of infrastructure, the school won top honours. “We got 99.5 per cent in higher secondary exam and 95 per cent in class 10 exam,” says the staff proudly.

However, many children still miss the lab. Aishwarya, another class 12 student, says that since the Moulivakkam building has been brought down, it is time for authorities to open the school gates of Moulivakkam Adi Dravidar School.

“The District Collector and the Adi Dravidar Welfare Director have to take a decision in this regard for the sake of school children,” said the staff.



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