MADURAI: Though the schools re-opened on Monday, most schools in the district still lack basic amenities. To add to this, the first day of school for a new academic year for students in the district started off with cleaning their classrooms and dusting tables.
Just as the children were dressed up in their new school uniforms and were busy bragging about their new school bag and fancy lunch boxes and were prepared to get new friends and teachers, they were left disappointed and were seen with brooms and dustpans, cleaning and dumping dustbins from their classrooms.
Though there are strict orders that schools can be punished if they make the children work, this remains a floating norm in most of the schools, including private schools.
Jothi, (name changed) a Class 7 student from a government aided school near the CEO, said sweeping classrooms is a daily routine when the school reopens. Every evening a team of four to five members are made to clean the class rooms, she said.
Apart from this the students were made to sit in a classroom that lacks adequate space and power supply.
In spite of repeated direction from the government asking the education department to ensure that all the schools are equipped with basic facilities, the department has failed to fulfill their duties, especially in schools situated in the pockets of Madurai.
Further, most government schools are not provided with toilets. For instance, the students of government aided school were forced to relieve on the road as the school does not have toilets. Most girls hesitate to do this and have no other go but wait for long hours, till they reach home, to relieve.
“It is more difficult for girls who are in Class 7 and 8 who compulsory need toilets,” said a teacher preferring anonymity.