VELLORE: VIT community Radio programme (90.8 FM) has begun a special recording drive under the title ‘A School Bell Rings’, to motivate school children develop communication skills by showcasing their extracurricular activities through programmes broadcast to the student community and others.
The first recording session was launched at the Corporation Middle school in Vellore main bazaar recently.
The community FM radio was started by VIT University in January this year by the cine star Sarathkumar. A number of programmes have been broadcast covering a radius of 20 km from the university campus. The university has built a studio with exclusive acoustical facilities for recording and talkback, with transmission control booths, an editing section and a post-production centre, at an estimated cost of Rs 40 lakh. Director of the radio service Dr Chidambaram said that the ‘School Bell Rings’ programme is a platform that encourages school children in about 200 schools in the vicinity to improve their language and communication skills. This also helps them develop listening skills to radio programmes, a healthy shift from their addiction to television and the smart phone culture. Students will be selected to participate in poetry recitation, folk songs, quiz, conversations in English and other languages, information snippets, science concepts and historical documentaries. Chidambaram said, “Initially we experimented with four schools nearby and the response from the students was overwhelming. The news has spread to other schools that are also seeking to involve their children in this programme. It is the aim to have recording sessions in all schools within the corporation limit soon.” The community radio broadcast programmes held in the schools on Teachers Day recently and Independence Day last month, he added. The service is available between 9 am to 12 noon and from 5 pm to 8 pm.
Tamilmaran, project officer of the Center for Sustainable Rural Development and Research Studies said that under a ‘Make a Difference’ programme, student volunteers would be organizing programmes for the school students on various skill developments such as English communication, maths, science and interactive discussions that would be broadcast through community radio. The weekly programme could be played by schools so that it would be supplementary to regular teaching sessions, he added.