VILLUPURAM: A government school that had been consistently producing around 95 per cent plus-two pass results until a few years back, suddenly saw a drastic drop to 47 per cent in the HSC examination held in 2013. And, the reason for this was found to be a shortage of teachers and lack of basic on-campus facilities.
The 60-year-old Anandhapuram Government Higher Secondary School has 1,121 students in classes VI to XII and over 200 students are admitted in HSC in various groups. However, several teachers posts of major subject including Zoology, Physics, Chemistry, Commerce and English were lying vacant.
A class XII girl from the biology group said, “We find it very difficult to study the lessons by ourselves. It is nearly 3 months since the school opened and the vacancies have still not been filled. If we don’t get teachers how will we be able to face the board exam?” she asked.
The headmaster said, “Currently there are 45 teaching and non-teaching staff in the school. The school lacks 6 PG teachers for classes XI and XII.”
Local villagers pointed out that the school has been lacking subject teachers for the past 8 years. Sources said the reason for this shortage was that teachers from far off places such as Dharmapuri, Vellore and Thirunelveli are usually appointed here. The teachers find it difficult to continue working at the school for more than 3 months due to family-related concerns and obtain transfers to their native districts,” they added.
Besides this, the school also lacks proper water facilities on the campus. Although more than 1,000 students are enrolled in the school and mid-day meals are also provided, the students are forced fetch drinking water from a hand-pump about 300 metres outside the campus.
Sources said, the school had an electric motor fitted to a water tank, which developed a snag six months ago. Since then the students were forced to fetch water from outside the campus.
The lack of water also causes sanitation problems on the campus and the worst affected are the girl students and women staff.
The same situation prevails in the hostels too, where about 300 boys and girls stay in two different buildings of the MBC hostel near the school. According to the students, those who stay in the hostel have to fetch water from the same pipe off the campus for drinking as well as daily use in the hostels.
When contacted, CEO Mars said, “We had already sanctioned an approval to fill the vacant posts in Consolidate Pay Staffs. Also, Jay Kay Foundation, a private educational trust, had come forward to donate the salaries for the consolidate pay staff. The vacancies would be filled and the pump would be fixed at the earliest,” he said.